CMA concerns over Sainsbury’s-Asda merger

Sainsburys2The UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has referred the potential Sainsbury’s and Asda merger for an “in depth” investigation.

On completing initial investigations into the merger, the CMA has confirmed that the deal raises “sufficient concerns” which require a more in-depth review.

Sainsbury’s and Asda are two of the largest grocery retailers in the UK. The CMA has concerns that “shoppers could face higher prices or a worse quality of service,” where stores overlap in hundreds of local areas.

The Phase 2 investigation will investigate these concerns along with other issues raised by the CMA including issues relating to fuel, general merchandise and increased ‘buyer power’ over suppliers.

It will be led by an inquiry group from the CMA’s independent panel members who will gather evidence through customer surveys and engagement with other retailers, suppliers and industry bodies.

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