"However, at a very basic level, there is a key difference between the competitive situation in the U.K. and that in Denmark.

 

A combined 3/O2 would lead the U.K. market in terms of customer numbers, but the deal would effectively even out the competitive landscape, leaving three strong players to fight it out.

 

Conversely, the Danish merger would have left two large players in TDC and TeliaSonera/Telenor, plus a much smaller operator in the form of Hutchison's local 3 unit, which at the end of last year had a market share of only around 12%.

 

So while the failure of the Denmark deal is a cause for concern for Hutchison in the U.K., it is perhaps in a better position to win over European competition officials."