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UK anti-competition regulator looking to HPE's acquisition of Juniper Networks

A Hewlett Packard Enterprise sign

The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has opened an investigation into Hewlett Packard Enterprise’s acquisition of Juniper Networks to see if it is anti-competitive. As background, HPE said that it wanted to buy the network gear producer to help improve its artificial intelligence offerings.

The CMA has said very little about its investigation, only that today marked the launch of the inquiry and that August 14 would be the deadline for its phase 1 decision. From today until July 3, it is open to hearing comments about the merger which could affect its decision.

The UK’s CMA, with other regulators around the world, have started acting as more of a thorn in the side of big tech in recent years. The most notable incident was when Microsoft tried to acquire Activision Blizzard, which it succeeded in doing eventually. The CMA also scuppered Adobe’s acquisition of Figma.

If no decision by the CMA has been made by the August deadline, it may launch a second phase investigation to look more deeply into HPE’s acquisition. This will further drag out the waiting game for HPE before it can finally close the deal and get on incorporating Juniper Networks more deeply into its operations.

According to Reuters, which reached out the two US-based companies, neither provided a comment on the matter. Reuters highlighted that the US stock market is currently closed for the Juneteenth holiday so we will need to wait until we see the market’s reaction to the news.

It is highly uncertain which way the decision will go, hopefully, we don’t need to add a second phase to the investigation and drag out the final decision about the acquisition.

What is your prediction? Do you think the CMA will allow the deal or scupper it? Would you rather see that it goes through or fails?

Source: Gov.uk via Reuters - Image via Depositphotos.com

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