Liberty F1 deal facing UK anti-competition investigation

Liberty Media's planned acquisition of Formula 1 is to face an investigation by Britain's Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to ensure it does not breach anti-cartel laws.

Liberty F1 deal facing UK anti-competition investigation
The start of the race
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid leads Nico Rosberg, Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid, Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull Racing RB12, Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB12 at the start
Chase Carey, owner of Liberty Media
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid leads at the start of the race
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid leads at the start of the race

The CMA announced on Monday that it is considering whether or not Liberty's plans to control grand prix racing are in line with Britain's anti-competition legislation – laid down in the Enterprise Act 2002.

A statement of the government department's website said: "The CMA is considering whether it is or may be the case that this transaction has resulted in the creation of a relevant merger situation under the merger provisions of the Enterprise Act 2002 and, if, so, whether the creation of that situation has resulted, or may be expected to result, in a substantial lessening of competition within any market or markets in the United Kingdom for goods or services."

Interested parties that have concerns that Liberty's involvement in F1 will lessen competition in the UK have been asked to submit their claims by November 21.

The CMA said that the deadline then for a decision on whether or not the Liberty Media would face a more formal investigation would be made on January 5, 2017.

Liberty Media announced an $8 billion (USD) deal earlier this year to buy all of F1 holding company's Delta Topco's shares in the sport.

"The transaction price represents an enterprise value for Formula 1 of $8bn and an equity value of $4.4bn," Liberty Media confirmed in a statement that said it was initially taking an 18.7 percent stake in grand prix racing.

At the time, the American company said that completion of the deal was subject to certain conditions – which included 'clearances and approvals by antitrust and competition law authorities in various countries'.

 

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