Vodafone, Liberty deal is ‘a total win for consumers,’ says Liberty CEO

British-based Vodafone has struck a deal to buy some European assets of U.S. cable company Liberty Global for $21.8 billion in a move Liberty Global’s CEO, Mike Fries, said will benefit both investors and mobile users.

“It’s a total win for consumers,” Fries, who is also vice chairman of the company, told CNBC’s “Power Lunch” on Wednesday.

Vodafone, the world’s second-largest mobile carrier, operates in Europe, Asia, Africa and Oceania. In the deal, Vodafone is buying Liberty Global’s businesses in Germany, Hungary, Romania and the Czech Republic.

But, critics argue that the deal with hinder competition and regulators may not approve. Deutsche Telekom is the largest competitor in Europe.

Fries, however, isn’t worried.

“We absolutely anticipate regulatory approval of this deal,” he said. “It will be approved at the EU level. Not necessarily in Germany or any of the individual markets. That’s an important distinction.”

The CEO pointed out that Deutsche Telekom — “who we know [in the U.S.] as T-Mobile” — already dominates the German market, with 50 percent of the country’s broadband customers.

And the German market, he said, “has been screaming for consolidation and a real national challenger. So together, Vodafone and our business, Liberty Global, will present a great opportunity for consumers. They’re going to see innovation, investment. All kinds of benefits over the long haul.”

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