The U.K. Office of Fair Trading has referred Dods Group’s proposed acquisition of DeHavilland’s political intelligence division to the Competition Commission. Political intelligence groups monitor and report on political issues for companies, organizations, and consultancies. The merging parties are the two largest players–and close rivals–in the U.K. political intelligence market.
The OFT had considered declining referral, on the basis that the market was insufficiently important, but “did not find that the deal met the relevant criteria for such an exception.” The regulator is concerned that consumers would be harmed by the deal, in the form of either higher prices or diminished quality. Competitive constraints exercised by smaller rivals or new entrants would not be enough to offset the anticompetitive effects of the merger.
Full content: OFT Press Release
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