BRUSSELS Jan 30 EU antitrust regulators blocked
a 5.2 billion euro ($7 billion) bid by United Parcel Service Inc
for TNT Express as expected, saying the firm
had not offered adequate concessions to ensure the deal would
not hurt consumers.
The world's No. 1 package delivery company had flagged the
negative decision on Jan. 14, saying it would withdraw its bid
because of opposition from the EU competition regulator. The
deal would have given it access to Dutch peer TNT's str onger
networks in fast-growing Asian markets and Latin America.
The European Commission, the EU competition watchdog, said
the proposed merger would have reduced competition in 15 EU
"(The deal) would have drastically reduced choice between
providers and probably led to price increases," EU Competition
Commissioner Joaquin Almunia said in a statement.
"We worked hard with UPS on possible remedies until very
late in the procedure, but what they offered was simply not
enough to address the serious competition problems we
UPS had offered to sell TNT's operations in 15 countries,
mainly in eastern Europe, with the principal potential buyer
France's DPD, but failed to convince the Commission of the
merits of its proposal.
The decision is Almunia's third veto of a takeover deal in
as many years. He blocked the $7.4 billion merger of NYSE
Euronext and Deutsche Boerse about a year ago and a plan to
combine Greek airlines Aegean and Olympic Air two years ago.