Aon withdraws clearance request for WTW merger

Aon plc (Aon) has withdrawn its request for merger clearance by the ACCC of its proposed acquisition of Willis Towers Watson plc (WTW), having decided to terminate their proposed merger.

Aon and WTW are two of the three largest providers of commercial risk, reinsurance and employee benefits broking and advisory services in Australia and globally.

The ACCC’s preliminary view was that the proposed merger would substantially lessen competition in the supply of commercial risk, reinsurance and employee benefits broking and advisory services in Australia.

Dye & Durham’s acquisition of GlobalX not opposed

The ACCC will not oppose the proposed acquisition of GlobalX Information Pty Ltd (GlobalX) by Dye & Durham Corporation (Dye & Durham), finding the transaction will not substantially lessen competition.

Dye & Durham and GlobalX are both information brokers that provide company, property and personal searches to a range of customers such as conveyancers, law firms, banks and direct to consumers. They also provide conveyancing software and manual property settlement services.

ACCC will not oppose Woolworths acquiring 65% share of PFD

The ACCC will not oppose Woolworths’ (ASX: WOW) acquisition of 65 per cent of the shares in wholesale food distributor PFD Food Services, following a detailed investigation that found the transaction is not likely to substantially lessen competition.

“We conducted extensive market inquiries across the industry, and undertook detailed analysis of supplier and competitor data, and internal documents of key interested parties. Ultimately the evidence before us did not indicate the transaction would be likely to substantially lessen competition,” ACCC Chair Rod Sims said.

ACCC will not oppose New Forests consortium bid for Green Triangle pine plantation

The ACCC will not oppose the bid by a consortium managed by New Forests Asset Management to acquire the Green Triangle Forest Products softwood plantation business (GTFP).

GTFP, located on the South Australian-Victorian border, has been put up for sale by investment manager Global Forest Partners. New Forests Asset Management is coordinating one of the bids.

New Forests already manages funds with interests in pine plantations and a sawmill in the region.

Salesforce and Slack deal not opposed

The ACCC will not oppose the proposed acquisition of Slack Technologies, Inc. (Slack) by, inc. (Salesforce).

Salesforce is a global supplier of customer relationship management (CRM) software.

Slack is an enterprise collaboration platform, which enables users to engage in direct messaging, group channel messaging, document sharing and limited intra-organisation voice-and-video-calling.

Landmark joint statement on merger control enforcement from ACCC, UK's CMA and Germany's Bundeskartellamt

The ACCC, the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority and Germany’s Bundeskartellamt have today issued a joint statement highlighting the importance of rigorous and effective merger enforcement.

The statement was launched at a virtual event today by the heads of each of the agencies.

“Competition can only be maintained by ensuring anticompetitive mergers do not happen. This is even more so in a fast-developing digital world impacted by the Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic,” the statement reads.

ACCC does not oppose Compare the Market's owners increasing stake in iSelect

The ACCC will not oppose acquisitions by Innovation Holdings Australia Pty Ltd (IHA) that would result in it holding up to 35 per cent of shares in iSelect Limited (ASX: ISU).

IHA (through its related bodies corporate), owns the comparison website Compare the Market and iSelect both offer services to consumers that compare various insurance, energy, and financial products and services.