The parties are considered to be each other’s closest competitors and the merger would lead to a very high combined market share.
The OFT believes that existing suppliers will be unlikely to compete adequately with the merged entity and that barriers to entry in this market in the UK are high. It is therefore concerned that the merged entity could increase prices and/or decrease innovation, quality, range or service to customers. This view is consistent with the significant number of third party concerns received by the OFT.
Ali Nikpay, OFT Senior Director, said:
‘This merger would bring together the two strongest competitors in the supply of mortgage sourcing software in the UK. A significant number of customers are concerned about the potential impact the proposed transaction will have on prices, innovation, investment and choice. We believe that this is an appropriate case to refer to the Competition Commission for a fuller investigation.’
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