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Morrisons gets green light to bag convenience store chain McColl's

Morrisons has received the green light from the competition watchdog to buy McColl's.

The Bradford-based supermarket offered to sell 28 of McColl's 1,100 convenience stores around the country and, as a result, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) said the deal can go ahead.


Morrisons agreed a £190million rescue deal when McColl's went bust with a £97million debt pile in May.


But the CMA said the take-over risked reducing competition and pushing up prices for shoppers.


It identified 35 areas where the deal could reduce competition between the convenience store chain and Motor Fuel Group (MFG), which, like the supermarket, is owned by US private equity business Clayton Dubilier & Rice (CD&R).


The CMA told Morrisons to submit proposals to avoid an in-depth probe of the deal, saying the rising cost-of-living crisis heightened the importance of 'proper competition' in the grocery market.


Sorcha O'Carroll, senior merger director at the CMA, said yesterday the proposed sales will 'preserve competition' and 'prevent customers from losing out'.


She said: 'If, after reviewing the responses to our consultation, we conclude that the competition issues have been addressed, the deal will be cleared.'


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