RETAIL UK Sainsbury’s – Asda merger in jeopardy

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Britain’s competition regulator said Sainsbury’s planned $9.5 billion (£7.2 billion) takeover of Walmart-owned Asda should either be blocked or require the sale of a significant number of stores, or even one of the brands.

In a major blow to the company’s’ plans to create Britain’s biggest supermarket group, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) said its current view was that it was “likely to be difficult for the companies to address the concerns it has identified.”

The (CMA) said it may block the deal or force the sale of several stores or even one of the brand names.

Chief executive Mike Coupe detailed the CMA’s analysis as “flawed” and also said the firm would be making “very strong representations” to it about its “inaccuracy and lack of objectivity”.

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