Meals combat: UK regulator probes Takeaway.com’s takeover of Simply Eat

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(Reuters) – Britain’s competitors watchdog will probe Takeaway.com’s buyout of Simply Eat, probably delaying completion of the multi-billion greenback deal to create one of many world’s largest meal supply corporations.

FILE PHOTO: Signage for Simply Eat is seen on the window of a restaurant in London, Britain, August 5, 2019. REUTERS/Toby Melville/File Picture

The investigation is a blow for the net meals ordering firm after it fought a protracted battle with rival Prosus NV to purchase Simply Eat, the market chief in UK meals supply.

The UK’s Competitors and Markets Authority (CMA) modified its place on the deal and now believes a probe could also be warranted, Takeaway mentioned on Thursday, including that the regulator can be wanting into whether or not it might have re-entered the UK market with out the present deal in place.

A CMA spokeswoman confirmed it might open an investigation however gave no additional particulars.

Takeaway mentioned it pulled out of the loss-making UK market in 2016 after fighting stiff competitors. That yr, the enterprise misplaced 768,000 kilos ($1.01 million) and made revenues of simply 76,000 kilos.

“Takeaway.com confirms that it didn’t have the intention to re-enter the UK market absent the transaction with Simply Eat,” the Dutch firm mentioned, including it might reply to the CMA’s questions and that it was assured of getting a inexperienced mild.

Earlier this month, Simply Eat’s shareholders agreed to the all-stock deal valued at 6.2 billion kilos over a rival bid from tech funding large Prosus NV.

Simply Eat and Prosus didn’t instantly reply to a request for a remark.

Takeaway has mentioned the mix will obtain annual price financial savings of about 20 million euros ($22.2 million) from centralizing orders on its platform, unifying manufacturers and bettering buying.

The probe comes after the UK watchdog launched an in-depth investigation into Amazon.com Inc’s buy of a stake in on-line meals supply group Deliveroo final month after the businesses didn’t assuage its preliminary considerations.

Reporting by Pushkala Aripaka and Samantha Machado in Bengaluru; Enhancing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty, Shounak Dasgupta and Josephine Mason

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