Customers oppose their bank’s takeover

Norway’s largest bank, DNB, plans to acquire Sbanken, formerly Skandiabanken, but the small bank’s customers are protesting mightily. They claim it will destroy competition between the two banks, and that they’ll take their business elsewhere. The announcement Thursday morning that DNB was offering NOK 11.1 billion for Sbanken set off a storm of objections and […]

Grocery stores log more high profits

Norway’s grocery store owners have long been among the wealthiest in the country, and the rich have gotten richer during the Corona crisis. With borders to Sweden closed, restaurants shuttered and Norwegians mostly stuck at home, the dominant retailer and wholesaler NorgesGruppen has enjoyed record revenues and paid out huge dividends to the family owning it. […]

Publishing firms face huge fines

Norway’s state competition authority warned several of Norway’s leading book publishing companies on Thursday that they collectively face a whopping NOK 502 million in fines. They’re accused of illegally sharing competitvely sensitive information and thereby influencing the price of books. Gyldendal faces the largest fine of NOK 202.4 million (around USD 22 million), followed by […]

Telenor fined for exploiting its role

European regulators are punishing Norway’s state-controlled telecoms giant Telenor with a hefty fine of NOK 1.2 billion (USD 125 million) for misusing its market dominance to put pressure on the profit margins of other operators. Telenor promptly announced Tuesday that it would appeal. “We are very surprised over both the conclusion of ESA (the European […]

Next train strike to threaten rush hour

Angry Norwegian railroad workers are threatening to halt Norway’s trains once again, if the government doesn’t postpone implementation of the latest package of EU rail directives. Now the striking workers aim to halt trains in the middle of an afternoon commuter rush period. A two-hour political strike last week halted trains all over the country, […]

Telenor hit with enormous fine

Norway’s top state competition regulator slapped leading telecoms firm Telenor, which remains majority-owned by the Norwegian state, with a fine of NOK 788 million (USD 97 million) on Thursday. The authorities claim Telenor abused its market power by preventing competitors from establishing a third mobile phone network in Norway. Telenor disagrees and is expected to […]

Airline wins support in battle with ESA

GUEST COMMENTARY: Norway’s regional airline Widerøe is currently in the midst of defending itself against a potentially punitive and expensive regulatory action from the European Free Trade Association (EFTA)’s competition authority (ESA). The small airline, which took expensive corrective action of its own many years ago to help it operate safely in and out of […]