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On March 15, Rogers made a shocking announcement: It’s set to buy out Shaw, Canada’s fourth Big Telecom provider.1
In Canada, we already pay some of the highest prices in the world for Internet and wireless — we need prices to go down, not up.2-3 But if we don’t stop this disaster of a sale, fewer providers in the market will lead directly to these services getting even MORE expensive.
How will the Rogers-Shaw sale lead to more expensive Internet and wireless?
While consumers, advocates, organizations, businesses, and more are crying out for lower prices and more competition, this deal threatens to move Canada in the opposite direction.
It’s economics 101: When companies have to compete for the same customers, it creates incentive to undercut each other — leading to downward pressure on prices across the board. More competition = lower prices!4
Canada already has a serious competition problem when it comes to Internet and cell phone data. We have just four major telecommunication companies offering wireless services, sometimes known as the “Big Four”: Bell, Rogers, Telus, and Shaw. Almost everyone uses these companies’ networks, including Big Telecom’s “budget” brands like Koodoo and Virgin Mobile.
The Rogers-Shaw deal will reduce the competition between those four companies by at least a whopping 25% — or much more, in local markets where there will now be only one major provider! That loss of competition will drive prices way up, and consumers will have significantly less choice about where they get their Internet and wireless services — especially in Western Canada.5
It’s happened before. In Manitoba in 2017, Bell bought out regional provider MTS. After the Competition Bureau allowed the sale, Bell went ahead and jacked up prices.6 Rogers is taking out huge loans to finance this deal with every intention of following Bell’s suit.7
We can stop them, but we have to speak up now. This is our last shot to make our voices heard before the Competition Bureau makes its decision — and we only have until Friday, October 29th to submit our comments. Use our consultation tool above to tell the Bureau NOW how the Rogers-Shaw buyout will impact you!