Three seeks £167m in damages over EE mast-sharing deal

(Image Credit: iStockPhoto/Kritchanut)

Three claims EE has not provided access to half of its masts promised in a sharing deal it struck when T-Mobile merged with Orange to create the UK's biggest MNO. An existing agreement with T-Mobile to use its 3G infrastructure should have provided Three with access to 3,300 of EE's masts after the merger. 

In court papers filed by Three, the now BT-owned EE has enabled Three to use just 1,301 of the mast sites – less than half of those promised. 

The company has calculated the damages it has incurred due to not having access to all of the promised masts to be at £127.9 million. Furthermore, it predicts future losses to be £39 million and has therefore asked for the full £167 million in compensation. 

“We are surprised that Three has taken the step of issuing proceedings, as we are in active discussions with them. We strongly reject the allegations, and we will contest them vigorously,” said an EE spokesperson. 

As the smallest MNO in the UK in terms of mobile subscribers, Three has shown its concern about EE's market position several times in the past. This feeling was amplified earlier this year when regulators approved the UK's biggest fixed-line broadband provider, BT, to acquire EE. 

In response, Three put in a £10 billion offer for O2 but the deal was blocked over fears the reduction of the UK's mobile operators from the current four to just three would have a negative impact on competition and increase consumer prices.

We have reached out to Three for comment and will update if we hear back.

Do you feel Three deserves compensation? Share your thoughts in the comments. in hearing industry leaders discuss subjects like this and sharing their use-cases? Attend the co-located IoT Tech Expo, Blockchain Expo, AI & Big Data Expo and Cyber Security & Cloud Expo World Series with upcoming events in Silicon Valley, London and Amsterdam and explore the future of enterprise technology.

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