Asda’s £611 million deal with the Co-op’s petrol station business has been cleared by the UK competition authority.
The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has investigated the deal, which was finalized in October, which saw the supermarket giant buy 132 petrol stations.
Earlier this year, the watchdog launched a phase 1 study and said in March that the deal could lead to higher prices or less choice in some parts of the country.
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However, the CMA has now approved the deal and will not open an in-depth phase two investigation.
The ruling comes after Asda offered to sell 13 petrol stations in a bid to address competition concerns.
In August 2022, the co-op first announced plans to sell its 132 gas stations and adjacent convenience stores in an effort to bolster its finances.
The cooperative said proceeds from the sale would be reinvested in its key convenience stores, prices, retail operations and reducing its debt burden.
In October, Asda said the CMA had issued an initial enforcement order meaning the Co-op sites must remain segregated until an investigation is completed.
At the time, the supermarket giant said the process is likely to take “until mid-2023”.
Following the transaction, an official inquiry into the deal was launched in January and 2,300 employees moved to Asda.
The news comes after Asda announced a deal worth more than £2bn to acquire the majority of EG Group’s UK and Ireland businesses.
Both companies are owned by the billionaire brothers Issa and private equity giant TDR Capital.