|Phase 1 Date
|20 June 2018
||Secretary of State and CMA decisions published
|31 May 2018
||Deadline for CMA to submit report to Secretary of State
|2 May – 8 May 2018
||Invitation to comment (Ofcom – public interest assessment)
|1 May 2018
||Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport issued a public interest intervention notice
|11 April – 25 April 2018
||Invitation to comment (CMA - competition assessment)
|10 April 2018
||Launch of merger inquiry
|1 March 2018
||Initial enforcement order
CMA clearance decision
20 June 2018: The CMA has cleared the completed acquisition by Trinity Mirror plc of certain assets of Northern & Shell Media Group.
Extension of CMA deadline
20 June 2018: The CMA has extended its 40 working day deadline by notice of extension under section 34ZB(4).
Secretary of State announcement
20 June 2018: The Secretary of State has announced his decision not to refer the Merger to a Phase 2 investigation on the ground that no public interest consideration to which he is able to have regard is relevant to a consideration of the Merger. The Secretary of State has, therefore, required the CMA to deal with the Merger as an ordinary merger case under section 56(1). As part of this decision, the CMA’s report has been published.
CMA reports to the Secretary of State
31 May 2018: The CMA has delivered its report on jurisdictional and competition matters to the Secretary of State.
2 May 2018: Ofcom is investigating whether the acquisition by Trinity Mirror plc of certain publishing assets of Northern & Shell Media Group Limited could raise public interest concerns in relation to the need for free expression of opinion in newspapers; and the need for, to the extent that it is reasonable and practicable, a sufficient plurality of views in newspapers in each market for newspapers in the United Kingdom or a part of the United Kingdom. Further information can be found on the Ofcom website, including their guidance note and their invitation to comment.
1 May 2018: The Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport issued a public interest intervention notice (PIIN) on the public interest grounds of free expression of opinion in newspapers and sufficient plurality of views in newspapers in accordance with sections 42(2) and 58(1) of the Enterprise Act 2002 (the Act) in relation to the completed acquisition by Trinity Mirror plc of certain assets of Northern & Shell Media Group Limited. This means that the Secretary of State will make the decision on whether this transaction operates, or may be expected to operate, against the public interest and should be referred to a phase 2 assessment, taking into account both competition and public interest issues.
The Secretary of State has required the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) and Ofcom to investigate and report in accordance with section 44 and 44A of the Enterprise Act 2002 by 31 May 2018.
The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) will report on jurisdictional and competition matters. Further information on the CMA’s role is described in Mergers: Guidance on the CMA’s jurisdiction and Procedure (CMA2).
Ofcom will report on the public interest considerations set out in the PIIN.
11 April 2018: The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is considering whether it is or may be the case that this transaction has resulted in the creation of a relevant merger situation under the merger provisions of the Enterprise Act 2002 and, if so, whether the creation of that situation has resulted in a substantial lessening of competition within any market or markets in the United Kingdom for goods or services.
11 April 2018: The CMA brought the acquisition of Trinity Mirror plc of certain assets of Northern & Shell Media Group Limited to the attention of the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport under section 57(1) of the Act, as the CMA considered that the transaction may raise public interest considerations under section 58 of the Act.
Launch of merger enquiry
10 April 2018: The CMA announced the launch of its merger inquiry by notice to the parties.
Initial enforcement order
1 March 2018: The CMA has served an initial enforcement order under section 72(2) of the Enterprise Act 2002 on Trinity Mirror plc in relation to the completed acquisition of certain assets of Northern & Shell Media Group Limited.
Please send written representations to:
Competition and Markets Authority
2A Southwark Bridge Road