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UK Watchdog Begins Probe Of Asda Sale To Issa Brothers

 |  December 8, 2020

Britain’s competition regulator announced on Tuesday, December 8, that it had formally launched an inquiry into the acquisition of British supermarket group Asda by the Issa brothers and private equity group TDR Capital.

In October, Mohsin and Zuber Issa and TDR agreed to buy a majority stake in Asda from US giant Walmart in a deal giving the chain an enterprise value of US$8.8 billion.

At the time, Walmart stated that it expected the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to consider the deal.

The CMA stated on Tuesday it had invited interested parties to comment by December 22 and set a February 18, 2021, deadline for a “phase 1” decision.

Last year, Walmart’s attempt to sell Asda to rival Sainsbury’s for £7.3 billion (US$9.4 billion) was thwarted by the CMA but analysts see few problems with the latest deal.

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