UK regulator approves Amazon stake in Deliveroo

(Photo by Jaap Arriens/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
(Photo by Jaap Arriens/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

British regulators on Tuesday said they had approved Amazon's bid to buy part of online takeaway delivery group Deliveroo after an in-depth probe found it would not hit competition.

An initial review of the deal by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), which assesses if consumers will lose out from a substantial lessening of competition, highlighted potential concerns.

But a subsequent fuller investigation concluded that it would not hurt competition "in either restaurant delivery or convenience grocery delivery" given the size of Amazon's stake.

UK-based Deliveroo announced in May last year that the US online giant was the largest investor in a $575-million funding round, giving it a 16% share of the firm.

Following its six-month probe, the CMA said it had cleared the deal on competition grounds after analysing internal company documents and surveying more than 3 000 consumers.

It also took extensive submissions from interested third parties, the CMA added.

"Our decision reflects the scale of Amazon's investment in Deliveroo... and its incentives to compete in both markets," Stuart McIntosh, who led the inquiry, said in a statement.

However, he warned that if Amazon were to increase its shareholding in Deliveroo, the move could trigger a further investigation by the CMA.

Created in 2013, Deliveroo has grown to delivering meals to clients in more than 200 cities across 12 countries.

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