Bell Canada (BCE) has agreed to buy Manitoba Telecom Services (MTS) in a friendly takeover valued at $3.9 billion. BCE is already the largest telecom company in Canada.
|The purchase price breaks down into $3.1 billion for the company and $800 million of debt. In a separate transaction BCE will sell a third of the MTS postpaid subscribers and also retail locations to Telus.|
A transaction of this magnitude deserves careful consideration. Some pundits and think tanks have been quick to support the deal, but a more rational review of the situation is needed. Our research suggests that the takeover would not be in the best interest of Manitobans, and that it could set a harmful precedent for the rest of the country.