Outlook: French gall
Wednesday 15 December 1999
London claims its get-together with Eastern, which is also foreign-owned, does not technically constitute a merger, since the physical assets and operating licenses will continue to be owned separately by the two parent companies. This is disingenuous. The new joint venture will operate both distribution networks as one under a single management and the two parents will share all the usual cost-saving benefits that come from mergers in the shape of job cuts, single IT systems and shared procurement.
To add to their Gallic gall, EdF is not proposing to share any of the substantial cost savings it expects to achieve with the five million customers of the enlarged group. If the deal goes through unchecked, it will mean further consolidation in an industry which is already ruled by monopolistic fiefdoms, weakening the energy regulator's ability to ensure that customers are not being ripped off.
The French are gambling on the deal being whisked through in Brussels by dint of the sheer size of the respective parent companies and the usual pusillanimous display from the Department of Trade and Industry. Don't let them use the loophole. This is one deal that cries out to be hauled back to London and packed off to the Competition Commission. If ground rules aren't set now, more electricity distribution companies will follow where London and Eastern have led.
- 1 British tourists 'murdered' in Thailand: Pair's bloodied bodies found naked on Koh Tao beach
- 2 Vivienne Westwood says 'Yes' to Scottish Independence by declaring: 'I hate England'
- 3 Welcome to Cameroon, where drinking Baileys can lead to imprisonment
- 4 Lego breaks out of the toy box and heads for the gallery
- 5 Vogue under fire for 'Big Booty' article
British tourists 'murdered' in Thailand: Pair's bloodied bodies found naked on Koh Tao beach
Jihadi John': MI5 may have identified Isis militant who killed David Haines but options limited
Vivienne Westwood says 'Yes' to Scottish Independence by declaring: 'I hate England'
David Haines beheading: David Cameron says Britain will hunt down Isis 'monsters' shown in video murdering aid worker
Piers Morgan attempts to save the Union by promising to go back to the US if Scotland votes 'No' to independence
Daniele Watts: Django Unchained actress detained by Los Angeles police after being mistaken for a prostitute
The political class is doing what Hitler couldn’t – destroying Britain
Scottish independence: Nationalist leader Jim Sillars threatens pro-union companies with 'day of reckoning' after independence
Scottish independence: Yes campaign feels the heat as Alex Salmond's NHS claims come under furious attack
£23m Birmingham cycle scheme is attacked by Tory councillor for not catering to the elderly
Salmond accused of laughing off national debt with ‘what are they going to do: invade?’ joke
iJobs Money & Business
£280 - £320 per day: Ashdown Group: The Ashdown Group have been engaged by a l...
£400 - £450 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: **URGENT CONTRACT ROLE**...
£35000 - £38000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Training Coordinator / Pl...
Data Governance Manager (Solvency II) – Contract – Up to £450 daily rate, 6 month (may go Permanent)
£400 - £450 Per Day: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: We are currently looking...