The GLENTEL, Bell and Rogers saga continues as Christmas comes and goes, but it does look like Rogers gave them both a Christmas present when it backed off its injunction and stated that Rogers and BCE will form their own joint venture together, once the acquisition of GLENTEL by BCE is complete…sometime the first quarter of 2015. It is hard to imagine that Rogers and Bell would work on anything together – maybe miracles really do occur this time of year. As part of the proposed agreement, Rogers was to back off its recently filed injunction to prevent BCE from purchasing GLENTEL’s 494 retail locations across Canada, including WIRELESSWAVE, Tbooth wireless, WIRELESS etc., Target Mobile, and more.
This all started in November when GLENTEL announced that Bell (BCE) was going to acquire them for $670 million. Rogers, whose plans and equipment are sold through GLENTEL outlets, was not happy about this and claimed that under their current agreement GLENTEL had to first get Rogers’ approval for the sale. They quickly filed an injunction with the Ontario Superior Court of Justice to block the impending sale. GLENTEL immediately declared that Rogers’ claims were without merit. Tom Skidmore, GLENTEL President and CEO laid it all out when he said:
“For over 25 years, GLENTEL has distributed Rogers’ mobile products through our Canadian retail stores and we hope to continue to do so. The BCE acquisition does not affect GLENTEL’s agreement with Rogers, which will continue to remain in force after the acquisition completes. Rogers has the right to remove their products from our Canadian stores if they choose or to terminate its agreement with us, but has no right under its agreement to block the acquisition of GLENTEL, which operates in Canada, the United States, Australia and the Philippines. Rogers’ claim is without merit and we will certainly defend against it. Approval of the acquisition is up to GLENTEL’s shareholders, not one of our many suppliers, and we look forward to closing the acquisition in early 2015.”
We may never find out for sure if there indeed was that type of wording in the original agreement between Rogers and GLENTEL that allow Rogers to say ‘yea or nay’ to the sale of GLENTEL. However, with is new ‘arrangement’ Rogers said in a release that this “agreement makes it easy for customers to continue to shop for Rogers products and services in their community.” Rogers and Bell have worked together in the past when they joined forces to control Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment (MLSE), so this new venture is not unheard of in the Canadian business world.