U.S. package delivery giant United Parcel Service (UPS) announced it has withdrawn its offer to purchase Dutch rival TNT Express following the anticipated formal decision by the European Commission (EC) disapproving the proposed acquisition.
“As a result of the prohibition by the EC, the Offer Condition relating to EU Competition Clearance will not be fulfilled and the acquisition of TNT Express by UPS will not be completed. Given this outcome, UPS and TNT Express entered a separate agreement to terminate the Merger Protocol,” UPS said in a statement yesterday.
Less than three weeks ago, UPS stated on January 14 that it was planning to drop its offer to buy TNT Express on learning that the commission was not going to act favorably on its proposed bid.
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.
UPS said yesterday that while disappointed in the EC’s decision, “the company’s focus is on the continued execution of its growth strategy.”
Photo: Kuba Bozanowski