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KKR to offer ‘commitments’ to secure approval for €22bn Telecom Italia deal

Private equity major KKR is poised to propose a package of commitments in a bid to secure early approval from the European Union for its proposed €22bn acquisition of Telecom Italia’s landline network, according to a report by Bloomberg.

The report cites unnamed sources familiar with the matter as indicating that the commitments, which are expected to be filed next week, will likely appease EU concerns over possible price increases in the wholesale telecoms market, allowing the deal to be approved next month.

While the European Commission has been conducting a preliminary investigation into the possible effects of the deal on competition in the Italian telecoms market, KKR is keen to avoid an in-depth “phase 2” investigation which could delay completion by several months.

According to Bloomberg’s sources, if KKR’s commitments are formally offered and deemed acceptable, the EU would push back its decision on the deal by 10 days from its current 31 May deadline, allowing for approval in mid-June. A final decision has yet to be made though and there is no certainty that the deal will be approved.

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