July 31, 2018 / 7:29 AM / 21 days ago

UK competition regulator to further investigate Experian-ClearScore deal

(Reuters) - Britain’s competition watchdog will open a more in-depth probe into Experian Plc’s (EXPN.L) acquisition of ClearScore after the world’s biggest credit data company chose not to offer proposals to address concerns from the regulator.

Experian said in March it would buy financial technology company ClearScore for 275 million pounds ($360.9 million).

The Competition and Markets Authority said earlier this month it was concerned the merged company would be less likely to innovate and could potentially lead to people paying more for credit cards and loans.

“We continue to believe the proposed acquisition is a good move for innovation, competition and consumer choice in the UK. As such, we will continue to work constructively with the CMA to make the case as to why the transaction should be approved,” a spokeswoman for Experian told Reuters in an email on Tuesday.

The watchdog had found that Experian and ClearScore are the two largest credit checking firms and compete with each other.

Experian, a FTSE 100 company, wants to expand in Britain with the purchase of ClearScore, which has over 6 million members in the country and provides free access to credit reports and scores, and introduces consumers to personal financial products.

Reporting by Noor Zainab Hussain in Bengaluru; Editing by Amrutha Gayathri, Bernard Orr

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