The first phase of the investigation runs until 25 July 2017. During this period, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) will assess whether the deal could reduce competition and choice for shoppers and other customers, such as stores currently supplied by Booker.
After this first phase, the merger will either be cleared or, if the CMA identifies a potential reduction in competition, it will be referred for an in-depth investigation lasting up to 24 weeks - unless the merging parties can offer proposals following the first phase of the investigation which address any concerns identified.
Having ensured it has all the necessary information from the companies before opening the investigation, the CMA is now seeking views on the merger from all interested parties.
Those interested are invited to submit their views by 13 June 2017. Further details will be available on the investigation case page.