Belfast Telegraph

Watchdog probing proposed Standard Life deal with Aberdeen Asset Management

The UK's competition watchdog has launched an investigation into the potential £11 billion tie-up between Standard Life and Aberdeen Asset Management.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) said the move would find out whether the deal c ould harm competition within the industry.

The watchdog is now seeking feedback on the proposed mega-merger and will decide if it will launch a more in-depth investigation by July 18.

If given the green light, t he deal would create one of the world's industry powerhouses, overseeing £660 billion worth of global assets.

The merger, which was agreed in March, is targeting cost savings of £200 million a year, with around 800 jobs expected to be lost over a three-year period leaving a global workforce of 9,000 staff after the restructure.

Bosses said at the time they expect "natural turnover" to account for some of the reductions, while other steps will be taken to minimise compulsory redundancies.

Under the terms of the deal, Aberdeen shareholders would own 33.3% and Standard Life shareholders would own 66.7% of the combined group.

The newly-merged company would be renamed Standard Life Aberdeen plc, with Standard Life chairman Sir Gerry Grimstone continuing in the role and Aberdeen's chairman Simon Troughton becoming deputy chairman.

Keith Skeoch, the Standard Life chief executive, and Aberdeen boss Martin Gilbert will become co-chief executives of the new firm.

A spokesman for Standard Life said: "Standard Life today filed an application with the CMA in respect of the proposed merger with Aberdeen Asset Management.

"This has triggered today's announcement by the CMA that the standard phase 1 review of this application is now under way.

"This is one of a number of regulatory and anti-trust approvals being sought as part of the merger process.

"Approval for the merger has already been granted by competition authorities in the US and Germany."