CTI Ltd - Joint venture: Vodafone & o2

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News article

CTI Limited - the joint venture between Vodafone & Telefonica (O2)

September 2012

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Vodafone and Telefonica have got one step closer to merging their respective networks to drastically reduce overheads. 

Whilst they still have to convince regulators that their new company CTI Limited will only be a joint venture and not a merger, the consolidation of their respective networks will enable them to compete in the tough telecoms market with improved margins and coverage across the UK. An outcome is expected to be announced around 1 October 2012.

Although Vodafone and O2 will actively share masts, both are to be run as separate companies, with separate spectrum and retail premises. It is also understood that the second part of the partnership will see Telefonica manage the network in the east of England, Scotland and Northern Ireland, with Vodafone managing the West of England and Wales.
 
For landlords with Vodafone and O2 masts we are already seeing tough new requirements from the operators during negotiations including the requirement for the operator to freely be able to assign leases to both group companies and third party operators.  
 
Whilst initial negotiations may be 'painful' it is believed that a status quo will be quickly established leading to improved terms being offered by the operators and subsequently quicker completions. Landlords should treat with extreme caution any requests to alter leases made by either Vodafone or O2 as in many cases there will be opportunities to both improve general terms of leases as well as attract higher rents and one off premium payments in return for consent.
 
For further professional advice on this or other mobile phone mast issues, contact either Eve Angell or Chris Hicks on 01858 410200.
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