European Union regulators extended their review of United Parcel Service Inc. (UPS:US)’s bid for TNT Express NV (TNTE) by 10 working days until Dec. 12.
The European Commission didn’t specify the reason for the delay that was signaled in a filing on its website today. The time limit for the regulatory review of deals can be prolonged at the request of the companies or officials.
UPS, the world’s biggest package-delivery company, is seeking to expand in Europe with the biggest deal in its 105- year history. It will vault to equal footing there with Deutsche Post AG (DPW)’s DHL, the market-share leader. The tie-up with money- losing TNT will immediately add to earnings on an adjusted basis once the deal is done, the company said in March.
Atlanta-based UPS said earlier this month it expects the acquisition to close in the fourth quarter. It plans to extend its 5.16 billion-euro ($6.3 billion) cash offer for TNT beyond Aug. 31.
Peggy Gardner, a spokeswoman for UPS, didn’t immediately respond to an e-mail seeking comment before U.S. business hours. Ernst Moeksis, a Hoofddorp, Netherlands-based spokesman for TNT, didn’t immediately respond to a voicemail message and an e-mail seeking comment.
TNT shares fell as much as 1.1 percent to 8.80 euros in Amsterdam trading. They traded at 8.83 euros at 12:30 p.m., down 0.8 percent. UPS is offering 9.50 euros a share.
EU regulators said last week there are potential competition concerns for small parcel delivery services, in particular international express services, in several European countries where the companies would have very high combined market shares.
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