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Competition Watchdog Received Record 127 M&A Cases in 2015

Fair trade regulator Competition Commission of India (CCI) received 127 merger and acquisition cases in 2015, the highest registered in a calender year.The Competition Commission, in October, had received 21 filings seeking approval for mergers, the highest number for any month in the past four years.
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Competition Watchdog Received Record 127 M&A Cases in 2015
New Delhi: Fair trade regulator Competition Commission of India (CCI) received 127 merger and acquisition cases in 2015, the highest registered in a calender year. The Competition Commission, in October, had received 21 filings seeking approval for mergers, the highest number for any month in the past four years.

Last month, CCI had announced that it has given decisions on 29 combination cases during December, highest ever during any given month.

CCI has the mandate to keep a tab on unfair business practices across sectors, while mergers and acquisitions beyond a certain threshold also require its approval.

So far, the commission has dealt with more than 300 cases related to mergers and acquisitions.

In a tweet on Friday, CCI said it has "received 127 combination cases in 2015 -- highest number of cases received so far in a calendar year".

In July, CCI had revised its combination regulations as part of efforts to make the process simpler and more transparent.

According to the regulator, the amendments provide greater clarity and certainty with respect to Merger and Acquisition (M&A) filings and will help in avoiding undue delays in the approval process.

Among the combination decisions given this year are approval of IndusInd Bank's acquisition of gem and jewellery portfolio of Royal Bank of Scotland, acquisition of 26.33 per cent share capital of Tata Projects by Tata Capital and Omega, and acquisition of iGate by Capgemini.

Also, merger of retail store and retail infrastructure businesses of Future Retail and Bharti Retail got CCI's approval along with acquisition of additional 23 per cent equity of Aviva Life Insurance Company by Aviva International Holdings.

Among others, Pfizer-Vidhi Research deal and acquisition of Piramal Enterprises' lab diagnostics and point-of-care business by DiaSys India also got the regulators' nod.

The regulator also gave its green signal to acquisition of wealth management business of RBS by Sanctum Wealth and the acquisition of animal health business of Novartis by Eli Lilly.

CCI also introduced electronic filing facility last month, making it simpler for entities to submit information related to mergers and acquisitions (M&A).

In August, CCI Chairman Ashok Chawla had said that there was at least 15-20 per cent increase in filings. M&A filings for this year are likely to be 20 per cent more than the previous year, he had said.

CCI Member Augustine Peter had also said in November that there has been an increasing trend in combination filings in the recent past, which indicates that investors are increasingly turning positive about the Indian economy.

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