Ofcom to investigate BT's dominance after TalkTalk grasses them up
Ofcom are launching a competition inquiry into BT after they found "reasonable grounds" to support TalkTalk founder Sir Charles Dunstone's claims that BT's broadband dominance isn't on. Ofcom said it will "consider whether BT has abused a dominant position under UK and/or EU competition law".
Dunstone and TalkTalk’s chief exec Dido Harding have long complained that BT are "rebuilding its monopoly" through their new network of fibre cables, while BT big cheese Ian Livingston accused Sir Charles and Ms Harding of being "copper luddites." Dido Harding hit back at BT saying: "Monopolies on their own rarely spearhead national growth - only a Luddite would think that."
According to Ofcom, TalkTalk claimed: "BT has failed to maintain a sufficient margin between its upstream costs and downstream prices, thereby operating an abusive margin squeeze."
A spokesman for TalkTalk said: "We have long maintained that there needs to be tighter regulation in superfast broadband to ensure a level playing field and therefore deliver real benefits for consumers and businesses. We are pleased that Ofcom is taking this matter seriously and have decided there is reasonable suspicion to investigate BT’s fibre pricing."
BT said: "BT is disappointed that Ofcom has opened this case despite the lack of any evidence. We are confident there is no case to answer. It would be better if the industry’s, and Ofcom’s, focus was on investing in the future of the country rather than on spurious actions designed to hold up fibre in the UK."