February 17, 2014 / 6:43 PM / 4 years ago

Vodafone lodges complaint over Telefonica in Spain

MADRID (Reuters) - Vodafone (VOD.L) has lodged a complaint against Spanish rival Telefonica (TEF.MC), alleging it is abusing its position in Spain to reduce competition for telecoms, Internet and television services.

Vodafone branding is seen outside a retail store in London November 12, 2013. REUTERS/Toby Melville

The British company’s complaint, filed on Friday, comes as competition is intensifying in Spain’s market with sources saying Vodafone is studying a bid for cable operator Ono.

Vodafone on Monday accused the former Spanish state monopoly of abusing its position on its home turf by striking a deal with competitor Jazztel JAZ.MC.

Telefonica aimed to control the lion’s share of Spain’s fibre optics networks - those that can offer high-speed Internet and large data transfers, Vodafone said in a statement to Reuters.

Vodafone said Telefonica’s deal with Jazztel over fibre optic networks was struck in October 2012 and was part of a tactic to make it impossible for Vodafone to compete since it does not have fibre optic networks.

Telefonica also struck a deal with Telia Sonera’s TLSN.ST Yoigo in 2013, also the subject of complaints by Vodafone.

“All the practices ... leave fewer choices for consumers,” said Vodafone.

A spokesman for Telefonica said: “All our deals are legal. We have shown we are willing to sign deals with everyone.”

writing by Sarah Morris, editing by David Evans

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