Final hurdle cleared in FedEx/TNT deal

Like a trail of slowly falling dominoes, the regulatory clearance process for FedEx’s US$4.9 billion acquisition of TNT Express has moved from country-to-country, occasionally hitting minor setbacks, until today, when China’s Ministry of Commerce, the last remaining regulatory body to submit a decision, announced its full approval of the deal.

With approval from China’s Ministry of Commerce, FedEx and TNT Express are now poised to combine as one.

“With the approval of the MOFCOM, the Offer Condition with respect to Competition Clearances has now been fulfilled,” said U.S.-based FedEx and Netherlands-based TNT Express in a joint release.

“With this final regulatory approval, we are one step closer to making the vision of combining the complementary networks of FedEx and TNT Express a reality,” added Tex Gunning, Chief Executive Officer, TNT Express.

Although the deal announced in April 2015 went unchallenged in the United States and Europe, earlier this year UPS appealed to the Brazilian regulatory agency known as Conselho Administrativo de Defesa Econômica (CADE), asking it to reconsider its investigation. CADE declined UPS’ appeal on March 30 and said it would stand by its “unconditional approval” of the deal.

While little resistance was expected from Chinese regulatory authorities, it remained to be seen when a decision would be made. Now that the deal has received approval from all necessary bodies, FedEx expects the acquisition to close by the end of June 2016.

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