Log in
Forgot password ?
Become a member for free
Sign up
Sign up
New member
Sign up for FREE
New customer
Discover our services
Dynamic quotes 
  1. Homepage
  2. Equities
  3. Canada
  4. Toronto Stock Exchange
  5. BCE Inc.
  6. News
  7. Summary
    BCE   CA05534B7604


SummaryMost relevantAll NewsAnalyst Reco.Other languagesPress ReleasesOfficial PublicationsSector newsMarketScreener Strategies

Rogers' 'sweeteners' for $16 billion Shaw takeover may test Canadian regulatory, political patience

03/16/2021 | 07:29am EDT
FILE PHOTO: Rogers Communications logos are seen above a booth at the Canadian International AutoShow in Toronto

TORONTO (Reuters) - Rogers Communications Inc's efforts to secure its C$20 billion ($16 billion) acquisition of Shaw Communications Inc could be insufficient to overcome regulatory hurdles and political opposition amid concerns Canadians face some of the world's highest phone bills.

Rogers agreed on Monday to buy Shaw in a deal that would create Canada's second-largest cellular and cable operator, but the Canadian government was quick to say it would attract stiff regulatory scrutiny.

Analysts and fund managers say the company is facing an uphill battle closing the deal even as it has offered some incentives such as committing to maintaining affordable wireless plans with Shaw's Freedom Mobile carrier for three years, investing C$2.5 billion over the next five years to build out 5G in Western Canada, among others.

While Shaw shares surged on the bid, they closed 16.4% below Rogers' offer price, which investors said reflected the regulatory uncertainty.

The deal represents Rogers' second attempt in less than six months to consolidate Canada's concentrated telecoms market, where the top three operators control about 90% of the C$53.1 billion market. Rogers' effort to buy Cogeco Inc's Canadian assets was rebuffed by Cogeco's top shareholder in September.

The deal suggests that both Shaw and Rogers had already "beaten the doors down in Ottawa ahead of time and tried to suss things out," said Lawrence Surtees, lead communications analyst for IDC Canada.

But "the jury is still out" on whether regulators will approve it despite "all the little sweeteners in the deal," he said, also pointing to Rogers' promise to create a C$1 billion broadband fund.

Higher concentration in wireless business is emerging as an area of concern as the deal would cut the number of wireless providers to three from four in Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia, which constitute 67% of Canada's population, BMO Capital Markets analyst Tim Casey wrote in a note.

It is "no sure thing" that the deal will win the blessing of regulators, he added.


A top-ten shareholder in Shaw said the deal comes with regulatory risk, particularly in Ontario.

"That's really where you would see them push up against the 50% benchmark," the shareholder said, referring to the size of the market share Rogers and Shaw would have in Ontario after the deal, adding that a solution could be divesting some assets.

Rogers did not respond to a request for comment on the question of asset sales.

When Canadian telecom company Bell Canada took over Manitoba Telecom Services in 2017, it agreed to sell one-third of the company's monthly contract wireless customers and one-third of brick-and-mortar stores to Telus Corp.

The shareholder said Rogers would likely be willing to offload some assets in the east of the country, since the deal's value is in wireline infrastructure in western Canada. So-called 'wireline' assets transmit information using a physical wire and are considered key to the rollout of 5G.

"If we have to sell C$2 billion of assets in the east, that's fine," said the top shareholder.

Canadian Innovation Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne said the review would focus on "affordability, competition, and innovation."

The deal could attract extra attention in a year when Canada looks likely to have a federal election. Canada's telecoms industry came under fire ahead of the last federal election, with voters complaining about cellphone bills, which are among the highest in the world.

In March, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's minority Liberal government ordered Canada's top three telecom operators to cut prices on their mid-range wireless service plans by 25% within two years or face regulatory action.

Jason Kenney, premier of Alberta, where Shaw is based, said on Monday his government would monitor regulatory filings closely and likely make its own submissions to federal agencies.

"In particular we'll seek to have the commitments that it (Rogers) has made - increased employment and investment - made a condition of federal regulatory approval," Kenney said.

(Additional reporting by Nia Williams in Calgary; Reporting by Maiya Keidan in Toronto and Moira Warburton in Vancouver; Editing by Denny Thomas and Ana Nicolaci da Costa)

By Moira Warburton and Maiya Keidan

© Reuters 2021
Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
AUSTRALIAN DOLLAR / EURO (AUD/EUR) -0.09% 0.62499 Delayed Quote.-0.48%
BCE INC. 0.55% 61.99 Delayed Quote.13.89%
CANADIAN DOLLAR / EURO (CAD/EUR) -0.02% 0.675612 Delayed Quote.5.08%
COGECO COMMUNICATIONS INC. 0.23% 120.23 Delayed Quote.22.86%
COGECO INC. 0.04% 94.84 Delayed Quote.15.69%
EURO / CANADIAN DOLLAR (EUR/CAD) 0.02% 1.4801 Delayed Quote.-4.81%
ROGERS COMMUNICATIONS INC. -0.09% 64.49 Delayed Quote.8.83%
SHAW COMMUNICATIONS INC. 0.25% 36.5 Delayed Quote.63.38%
TELUS CORPORATION 0.25% 27.66 Delayed Quote.9.44%
All news about BCE INC.
07/23BCE : reports results of Series AI and AJ preferred share conversions (Form 6-K)
07/23BCE : Unifor reaches tentative agreement with Bell for craft workers
07/23BCE BRIEF : Reports Results of Series AI and AJ Preferred Share Conversions
07/23BCE : reports results of Series AI and AJ preferred share conversions
07/21BCE : Bell expands pure fibre Internet access to Inglewood and Palgrave in Caled..
07/21BCE : Bell 5G Said to be Fastest 5G Mobile Network, Offers Canadians 1st 5G roam..
07/21BCE : Bell 5G ranked as the fastest 5G mobile network, expands to 28 more commun..
07/20BCE : Bell expands all-fibre Internet access to Holland Landing, Mount Albert, Q..
07/20BCE : Bell Let's Talk Diversity Fund now open for new applications
07/19BCE : Virgin Mobile Canada is now Virgin Plus
More news
Sales 2021 23 736 M 18 866 M 18 866 M
Net income 2021 2 770 M 2 202 M 2 202 M
Net Debt 2021 28 642 M 22 765 M 22 765 M
P/E ratio 2021 20,0x
Yield 2021 5,64%
Capitalization 56 146 M 44 628 M 44 625 M
EV / Sales 2021 3,57x
EV / Sales 2022 3,47x
Nbr of Employees 50 704
Free-Float 84,9%
Chart BCE INC.
Duration : Period :
BCE Inc. Technical Analysis Chart | BCE | CA05534B7604 | MarketScreener
Technical analysis trends BCE INC.
Short TermMid-TermLong Term
Income Statement Evolution
Mean consensus OUTPERFORM
Number of Analysts 18
Last Close Price 61,99 CAD
Average target price 61,21 CAD
Spread / Average Target -1,26%
EPS Revisions
Managers and Directors
Mirko Bibic President, Chief Executive Officer & Director
Glen LeBlanc Chief Financial Officer & Executive Vice President
Gordon Melbourne Nixon Chairman
Stephen Howe Chief Technology Officer
Michael Cole Chief Information Officer
Sector and Competitors
1st jan.Capi. (M$)
BCE INC.13.89%44 671