Competition watchdog to investigate Ebiquity deal
The proposed sale of Ebquity plc's advertising intelligence division is set to be investigated by the UK's Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).
The tech-enabled marketing and media analytics consultancy, which counts the likes of Microsoft, Visa, KIA, eBay, Expedia and Uniliver as clients, announced earlier this year that it had agreed to sell its advertising intelligence business to Nielsen.
Ebiquity said the disposal would allow it to become a more operationally-aligned, streamlined business while CEO Michael Karg described the deal as a "transformational moment" for the company.
"We are now fully focussed on seizing market opportunities in our faster growing Media, Analytics and Tech practices, which we will enhance through our ability to invest in these services," Karg said at the time of the announcement in February.
Ebiquity's Portfolio platform allows clients to view, sort and analyse competitor advertising creatives and spend.
The CMA has now said that it will consider whether the combination would result in a "substantial lessening of competition" in the market. The watchdog is now inviting comments from any interested party and is expected to make a final decision by 13 June 2018.
If approved, the acquisition is expected to complete in the second quarter of 2018.