Armenia’s Ucom has thrown down a legal challenge against Team LLC’s proposed merger with Veon’s Armenian unit Beeline.
Team LLC was founded in April this year by former Ucom executives the Yesayan brothers, after they divested their shares in Ucom due to disagreements over the operator’s management. In May, Veon abandoned its talks of a potential merger with Ucom, and the following month Team lodged a bid to acquire 100% of Veon Armenia.
After the State Commission of the Protection of Economic Competition of the Republic of Armenia (RA SCPEC) asked Ucom to clarify its position on the proposal, the operator deemed the merger of Team LLC and Veon Armenia to be “subject to rejection on several grounds.”
Ucom argued that Team had engaged in “unfair and unscrupulous competition by using Ucom's undisclosed confidential information” while negotiating with Veon. It added that negotiations for equivalent acquisitions typically take months, and the fact that Team had reached a deal within a month was “both unfair competition and prohibited.”
Having issued its rebuke of the proposal to the regulator, Ucom has demanded that the merger be prevented, instructing its lawyers to “undertake all possible legal measures” to block the acquisition.