The UK’s competition watchdog said on Friday it started an investigation into whether the potential merger of pub owner Stonegate and larger rival Ei Group, which would create Britain’s biggest pub operator, would erode competition.
The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) said it has begun its phase 1 investigation following the European Commission’s decision to refer the case to the UK.
According to Reuters, the move comes as the country’s hospitality sector has been rocked by the closure of a number of major restaurant chains this year, while pub operators battle the cost of higher minimum wages as well as dampening consumer confidence due to uncertainties surrounding Brexit.
Full Content: Reuters
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