Decision on merger between Spain's Antena 3 and La Sexta


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  • In December 2011, Spanish terrestrial television channel Antena 3 announced that they had planned to acquire a rival broadcaster, La Sexta. In April 2012, the deal was passed by Antena 3's shareholders and was submitted for authorization to the Telecoms regulator and the Spanish Competition Commission (Comisión Nacional de la Competencia, CNC).
  • The CNC authorized the acquisition in July, giving Antena 3 a 42% share of TV advertising investment in the country. The acquisition was subject to a set conditions that were developed by the CNC based on documentation sent by, amongst others, the Spanish Advertiser Association (AEA). The AEA hailed these conditions as a positive first step towards keeping the industry competitive.
  • Antena 3 responded by rejecting these conditions and by claiming the CNC was being “unfair and discriminatory”. It also said that these terms had not been applied during Mediaset Spanish-owned Telecinco's takeover of Cuatro TV two years ago.
  • However, the Spanish Minister of Economy and Competitiveness declared the merger to be of "public interest" and asked the Council of Ministers to either ratify or reduce the conditions imposed by CNC.

The Council of Ministers has returned a decision:
  • The merger has been approved
  • The conditions applied to the merger have been reduced, and are similar to the conditions applied to the merger of Telecinco and Cuatro in 2009
  • The CNC will be responsible for monitoring compliance, in accordance with current regulations

For more information on the acquisition and potential effects on advertisers, please contact the AEA at: or visit

This acquisition will be discussed further at the next two Media Committee meetings to be held on October 3rd in New York and November 28th in Brussels respectively. For more information, please contact Minakshi Pai at:

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