March 18, 2019 / 6:26 PM / 6 months ago

Sainsbury's to detail price cuts to try to win over watchdog for Asda deal: FT

FILE PHOTO: A Sainsbury store sign is seen in south London in this May 14, 2008 photograph. REUTERS/Alessia Pierdomenico

(Reuters) - Sainsbury’s and Walmart’s Asda will provide a more specific commitment to cut prices in response to a negative provisional view by Britain’s competition watchdog of their proposed tie-up, the Financial Times (FT) reported on Monday.

Britain’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) dealt a potentially fatal blow to the deal last month, saying its initial view was that the proposed 7.3 billion pound ($9.7 billion) takeover of Asda by Britain’s No. 2 supermarket group would be blocked without the sale of a large number of stores, or even one of the brands.

The supermarkets will also recalculate a key indicator of consumer harm using what they consider to be more realistic criteria, and submit another proposal for store sales, the FT reported, citing people briefed on the process.

Sainsbury’s declined to comment, while Asda did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the FT report.

($1 = 0.7559 pounds)

Reporting by Noor Zainab Hussain in Bengaluru; Editing by Alexander Smith and Mark Potter

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