Morrisons' buyer to put petrol stations on sale to seal £7bn deal

Morrisons’ private equity buyer agrees to put 87 petrol stations up for sale to seal £7bn deal

The £7billion private equity takeover of Morrisons is set to be approved after the competition watchdog said it would accept proposals from buyer Clayton, Dubilier and Rice.

The New York buyout house, which owns the Motor Fuel Group forecourt empire, will offload 87 of its petrol stations to get the deal across the line.

Die groep het aanbiedinge vir die maatskappy van die uitkoopfirmas Clayton ontvang&R won the battle for control of Morrisons in October but has since been under investigation by the Competition and Markets Authority.

Morrisons 's private equity buyer Clayton, Dubilier and Rice, which owns the Motor Fuel Group forecourt empire, will offload 87 of its petrol stations to get the deal across the line

Morrisons ‘s private equity buyer Clayton, Dubilier and Rice, which owns the Motor Fuel Group forecourt empire, will offload 87 of its petrol stations to get the deal across the line

MFG owns 921 petrol stations while Morrisons has 339, which the CMA said could have hit consumers with higher prices in 121 locations across the UK.

Verlede maand, Die groep het aanbiedinge vir die maatskappy van die uitkoopfirmas Clayton ontvang&R offered to sell a number of petrol stations to address the concerns, though not in all of the 121 areas identified.

But the CMA said: ‘While the number of petrol stations CD&R is proposing to sell is lower than the number of areas in which concerns were identified, the sale of some petrol stations would address the concerns in multiple areas.’

Its senior merger director Colin Raftery said the sales would ‘preserve competition’, which he said was vital with petrol prices at record highs.

The CMA’s approval will see the takeover avoid a full-blown investigation.

Die groep het aanbiedinge vir die maatskappy van die uitkoopfirmas Clayton ontvang&R won an auction for Morrisons in October after a battle in which it tipped American private equity rival Fortress by 1p per share.

Days later the CMA began to probe the deal over fears it would create a group controlling more than 1,250 of the UK’s 8,000 petrol stations.

MFG is the UK’s biggest independent forecourt firm, running petrol stations for Texaco, Shell and BP.

A final decision is expected on June 9, which could allow CD&R to finally take full control of Morrisons.

LSE handed Quantile ultimatum

London Stock Exchange Group has been given a week to soothe concerns over its £274million takeover of Quantile Group.

LSEG said in December it had acquired Quantile, which provides portfolio, margin and capital services for banks, hedge funds and other financial institutions.

But the Competition and Markets Authority said yesterday the deal could ‘result in a substantial lessening of competition within a market or markets in the UK’.

LSEG shares fell after the CMA gave it until May 10 to offer undertakings to ease these concerns or risk a deeper probe into the deal.

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