This week, the president of UOKiK, Tomasz Chróstny, accused the cable TV operator Vectra for unilaterally introducing clauses enabling an increase in the fee for internet and television, despite the fact that the contracts did not contain an appropriate modification clause enabling such action. The operator is threatened with a penalty of up to 10 percent. trading.
Vectra’s customers received letters from the operator informing them about the unilateral addition to the general terms and conditions of the contract, under which the company may increase the amount of the subscription once a year. According to the Office, the current contractual conditions did not provide for the entrepreneur’s right to introduce such provisions.
Already at this stage, the President of UOKiK applied to the operator from the so-called a soft summons, in which he called to withdraw from the changes that are yet to come into force, which would allow the company to avoid administrative proceedings. Vectra, however, ignored the soft speech.
Vectra explains itself with “external independent circumstances”
Vectra responds to the accusations of the President of UOKiK in the issued announcement. According to the operator, changes to the terms of the contracts result from external circumstances, such as inflation or prices of services and equipment.
– We were forced to decide to change the terms of contracts with our clients due to external circumstances beyond Vectra’s control, including uniquely accelerating the development of digital technologies. In order to be able to offer our clients services at the highest level, we must invest in more and more modern and more efficient technologies. These investments are becoming a challenge, when we take into account the growing inflation, which is the result of an increase in energy prices, wages, social and tax burdens, services, materials and technical devices. It is also worth adding that fees for telecommunications services in Poland are among the lowest in Europe. Faced with these challenges, we were forced to implement the necessary changes“- we read in the Vectra announcement, given to the Wirtualnemedia.pl portal.
The operator also ensures that he is in contact with the affected customers – they receive letters explaining the prices of the increases.
– The change in terms and conditions only applies to clients with contracts for an indefinite period, i.e. with a 1-month notice period for each party. Most importantly, this information is provided in advance, and each of our subscribers and subscribers receives detailed information about the possibility of terminating the contract with detailed instructions on what to do if he does not agree to the new terms – explains Vectra.
Vectra announces explanations for UOKiK
– Given these circumstances, we cannot agree with the position of UOKiK. Our actions comply with the letter of the law and sufficiently protect the interests of customers who have the opportunity to withdraw from contracts in a timely manner – declares the operator, adding: – In the coming days, we will submit to the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection a more extensive substantive argumentation justifying our position in detail. At the same time, we remain at the disposal of the office, counting on a quick solution to the case and dispelling any doubts.
Vectra reports that it has 1.7 million customers, and with its network it reaches 4.5 million households. In 2019, the operator achieved an increase in consolidated revenues by 8.3%. to PLN 833.64 million and a decrease in net profit from PLN 64.42 to PLN 29.8 million.