The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has announced that it plans to launch an inquiry into the proposed purchase of Home Retail Group's retail brands by Sainsbury's, with the view that the takeover could potentially lessen competion within the UK market substantially.
The inquiry is likely to delay the completion of the £1.4b takeover deal – following early considerations, the CMA will decide whether a full assessment is required by the 25th July.
As it stands, the acquisition will see the business become the UK's largest non-food retailer. "We would be able to create a £6b non-food business that would rival Next, Amazon and Kingfisher, and really create a non-food business of scale," says a spokesperson.
The regulator has the power to end the deal or order the selling off of a number of stores if there are local competition concerns.
Sainsbury's says it looks forward to "the successful completion of the deal".