Adevinta’s acquisition of EBay Classifieds Group is running into in Austria and the U.K. So far, only Germany’s Competition Authority has cleared the merger.
In the U.K., there seems to be some headwind after the initial investigations. The country’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) launched a Phase 1 investigation into the deal, which must be completed within 40 working days. The deadline for this is Feb. 16, 2021. After that investigation, the CMA must decide if the merger would result in a loss of competition. If so, the investigation is moved to a second phase.
Unlike most European countries, the U.K. doesn’t require companies to notify the CMA about merger deals. However, if the CMA launches an investigation and determines it has decreased competition, the authority can break up the merger. By filing with the Authority, Adevinta and EBay played it safe.
Adevinta ASA is active in the U.K. through its online classified advertising platforms; Shpock, Agriaffaires, MachineryZone and Truckscorner. EBay Classifieds Group operates several online classified platforms there, including Gumtree and Motors.co.uk.
In Austria, Adevinta and EBay have asked the local Competition Authority for more time to explain the deal. The two companies will have until Jan. 18, 2021 to offer additional information on the merger, which was confirmed back in July.