EU regulators to approve $15.8 bln Liberty, Virgin deal - sources

BRUSSELS/LONDON, April 8 Mon Apr 8, 2013 6:46am EDT

BRUSSELS/LONDON, April 8 (Reuters) - EU antitrust regulators are expected to clear a $15.8 billion takeover bid by U.S. cable group Liberty Global for British peer Virgin Media without requiring concessions, two people familiar with the matter said on Monday.

"The European Commission does not have any competition concerns about the deal," one of the sources said.

The European Union competition authority is set to announce its decision by April 15. Antoine Colombani, Commission spokesman for competition policy, and Virgin Media declined to comment.

The deal is set to pit Liberty Global controlling shareholder and U.S. billionaire John Malone against Rupert Murdoch, owner of British satellite group BSkyB in the fast-developing European cable market.

The $15.8 billion value of the deal was the implied price on Feb. 6, the day it was announced.

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