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Rogers: Stock of the Week

How long will Freedom and Shaw be stuck in limbo? 

Andrew Willis 28 November, 2022 | 4:58AM
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Andrew Willis: The recent earnings miss from Rogers Communications (RCI.B) didn’t help with taking the pressure off questions around the Shaw (SJR.B) deal. The merger between the companies came with an olive branch to Canadian competition regulators by offering to sell off the Freedom mobile business to competitor Quebecor (QBR.B). But after another failed mediation, the deal is still in question.

The offer from Rogers and Shaw to give up Freedom Mobile to competitor Quebecor wasn’t enough to convince regulators in the latest round of talks. But our hopes weren’t too high anyway. Rogers and Shaw have already made considerable concessions and we don’t see any more middle ground available.

Equity analyst Matthew Dolgin says the Competition Bureau seems unequivocal in its opposition to the deal, but the companies may take their case to the Competition Tribunal in December for a ruling.

We think the deal has what it takes to be approved. There’s no overlapping wireline business, it adds Québec to an existing discount wireless network while improving the network in other provinces.  We want to empower Freedom Mobile and believe it’d be stronger with the backing of Quebecor – which means more competition, from Coast to Coast.

For Morningstar, I’m Andrew Willis.

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Securities Mentioned in Article

Security NamePriceChange (%)Morningstar Rating
Quebecor Inc Shs -B- Subord.Voting31.95 CAD0.00Rating
Rogers Communications Inc Shs -B- Non-Voting48.56 USD0.00Rating
Shaw Communications Inc Shs -B- Non-Voting39.68 CAD0.00Rating

About Author

Andrew Willis

Andrew Willis  is Senior Editor at Morningstar.ca. He previously produced content for Fidelity Investments and finance industry events for Euromoney Institutional Investor and has written in the past for Thomson Reuters and CNN. Follow him on Twitter @Andrew_M_Willis.

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