The following Competition guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:
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.
Under the Enterprise Act 2002 (EnA 2002), when investigating mergers, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has the power to accept remedies (undertakings in lieu (UiL)) after a phase 1 investigation and impose remedies after a phase 2 investigation. The CMA cannot impose remedial action on parties at phase 1. Rather, it is up to the parties to offer UiLs to avoid a phase 2 investigation.
The different types of remedies that can be accepted or imposed include:
structural remedies, for example:
divesting all or part of the business acquired, or to be acquired, to a suitable purchaser
carving a divestiture package out of the two merging businesses, with the purchaser keeping some of both businesses and selling some of them too
keeping the acquired business and divesting the business already owned
the sale of key assets (eg a manufacturing plant or take-off/landing slots at an airport)
licensing/assigning brands and/or IP rights (this is a specialised type of structural remedy)
behavioural remedies, for example:
commitments to continue supplying certain customers.
If necessary, the CMA may prohibit a transaction from taking place in
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