A 'relevant merger situation' under UK merger rules
A 'relevant merger situation' under UK merger rules

The following Competition practice note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • A 'relevant merger situation' under UK merger rules
  • Meaning of enterprise
  • Outsourcing/management contracts
  • Acquisition of property leases
  • Supermarkets
  • Wet lease arrangements
  • Ceasing to be distinct
  • Associated persons
  • Control
  • Legal control
  • More...

BREXIT: The law and practice referred to in this Practice Note may be impacted by Brexit. For further information on the potential impact, see: The effect of Brexit on UK competition law in a deal or no deal scenario.

The merger control rules of the UK are contained in the Enterprise Act 2002, as amended. Under the UK merger control rules, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has jurisdiction to review both completed and anticipated merger transactions provided there is a ‘relevant merger situation’. The UK rules do not generally apply to mergers in relation to which the European Commission has exclusive jurisdiction under the EU Merger Regulation.

Three conditions must be met for a ‘relevant merger situation’ to exist:

  1. two or more enterprises (or businesses) must ‘cease to be distinct’, and

  2. the target's size or the merger's impact on competition is large enough to meet one of the jurisdictional threshold tests, and

  3. the merger is within the time limit for review.

Note—in relation to transactions in certain sectors relevant to national security, the turnover threshold is lower and the share of supply threshold can be met solely by the target.

For information on the CMA's investigation process, see The UK merger investigation process. For details of ongoing UK merger investigations, see UK mergers–case tracker.

Note–although the UK left EU on 31/01/2020, UK turnover will still apply

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