UPS, the world’s biggest package delivery service, announced in mid-January this year that it planned to withdraw its offer to purchase its Dutch rival following the anticipated formal disapproval by the EC. The EC rejected UPS’ bid later that month, and the two logistics giant subsequently terminated their merger negotiations.
Peggy Gardner, a UPS spokesperson, told media that the company sought to challenge the EC’s decision to ensure that the EC conducts a more accurate assessment of the European competitive landscape so that it does not set a precedent of limiting international growth opportunities.
But she added that the appeal should not be seen as a renewed bid to acquire TNT Express.
Following the challenge, the EU General Court will review the merger decision, reports said.
In a press statement on April 8, Amsterdam-based TNT Express said it has noted the appeal by UPS to the European Court of Justice regarding the January 30, 2013 decision of the EC to prohibit the proposed acquisition.
TNT Express said it understood that the appeal was intended to clarify the EC’s legal assessment of the dynamics of the European express market. “It does not imply a renewal or reconsideration of the previously proposed UPS offer,” it said.
It added that it will continue to focus on implementing its updated profit improvement plan as announced last month.
In March last year, UPS offered to purchase TNT Express for EUR5.16 billion. The buyout of Europe’s second largest package delivery service by the world’s biggest would have paved the way for greater access by UPS into the European market.
But approval by the EC of the proposed merger had dragged amid worries of antitrust violations. The acquisition would have reduced to three the top four players in the European express delivery sector. The two others are DHL Express and FedEx Express.