EU approval of E.ON & RWE merger raises fears of new “dominator” on German energy market
EU competition watchdogs' green light for the deal to merge parts of German utility E.ON’s business with that of fellow utility RWE has led to energy industry fears of a “national dominator” on the market, Daniel Wetzel reports for Welt Online. Stefan Dohler of energy company EWE told the newspaper E.ON’s new clout as the country’s biggest power retailer by far, “will make it omnipresent in technical committees, allowing it to set norms and standards that disadvantage its competitors.” Moreover, the planned roll-out of smart electricity meters would give E.ON access to more customer data than anyone else, making it “a data kraken in the German power market, comparable to Amazon and Google,” Dohler said.
Under the deal announced by country’s two largest energy companies in early 2018, RWE would take over E.ON’s renewable energy production assets while E.ON would take RWE’s retail trade and become a major power distributor. Energy lawyers have argued the deal would give E.ON in particular too much market power. Other competitors, including green electricity supplier Lichtblick and many municipal utilities, plan to oppose the merger.