FedEx takeover of TNT clears European hurdle

A TNT Boeing 747 Freighter unloads

FEDEX is set to be given the go ahead by the European Commission for its 4.4 billion euro ($4.8 billion) takeover of Dutch courier delivery firm TNT Express.

The deadline for the commission to issue any antitrust objections to the merger was Friday, 23 October, but both companies say they have not received any from authorities in Brussels. In a joint statement on Tuesday, FedEx and TNT said the Commission has informed them no statement of objections will be issued.

Both expect to close the deal in first half of 2016. The integrators reached a conditional agreement on the deal in April, before FedEx made the offer in August and TNT shareholders approved it in October.

The European competition authorities rejected a 5.2 billion euro offer for TNT by UPS two years ago, but the FedEx deal was given the green light as it has less activity in the European market.

The takeover would give FedEx a significant foothold in the European express market. Industry forecasters say the two firms will have a combined 17 per cent share in Europe, in second place to DHL, but ahead of UPS.