LONDON, 30 MARCH 2011 - Atos Origin has won EU regulatory approval to acquire Siemens' IT services unit, under an US$ 850 million (£720 million) deal announced last December.
Atos has said that adding the Siemens business will boost its European presence. Siemens announced 1,750 redundancies following the acquisition being made public last year.
The European Commission said the acquisition would not raise any "significant" competition concerns in the IT services market.
The Commission said the merged companies would have a combined market share of about five percent. "The parties are generally not active in the same countries", said the Commission, although both have big contracts in the UK.
Major Atos UK contracts include those with the Highways Agency, the London Olympics, Nomura Asset Management, and the UK government. Siemens has UK deals with Aston Martin, the BBC, Gatwick Airport, and contracts with the government, among others.
Both Atos and Siemens recently agreed to sign up to new cost-cutting memoranda of understanding with the government to improve efficiency in existing contracts.
The Commission said Atos Origin "will continue to face several strong, effective competitors with significant market shares as well as potential new competitors from emerging countries".
It added: "Customers are to a large extent sophisticated buyers with an important degree of buyer power. Therefore, the Commission concluded that the transaction would not raise competition concerns."
The acquisition is expected to be completed this July.
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