Paddy Power and Betfair owner Flutter Entertainment PLC (LON:FLTR) shares advanced in Tuesday morning’s deals as the UK’s competition watchdog greenlighted its acquisition of Toronto headquartered The Stars Group Inc (TSE:TSGI).
The UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) granted ‘unconditional phase one clearance’ for the deal to proceed.
Peter Jackson, Flutter chief executive, said the CMA approval represents an important milestone.
The acquisition remains conditional on shareholder approval – for which a general meeting is scheduled on 21 April – as well as other small regulatory approvals, albeit the company noted that timings may be impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.
“We continue to work with the remaining international regulatory authorities to obtain the last of the outstanding approvals,” Jackson added.
“Separately last week we published the necessary documentation ahead of the shareholder votes in April and we continue to make good progress in our post-completion planning.”
Flutter and Stars agreed an all-share merger in October that, if completed, will create the world’s largest online betting and gaming operator, with combined revenues of £3.8bn and total market capitalisation of more than £11bn at current share prices.