US-based online retailer Amazon‘s US$1.4bn (£1.1bn) acquisition of robot vacuum maker iRobot will reportedly be blocked by EU regulators from its Antitrust and Cartels watchdog.
According to three people familiar with the matter, the attempted block forms part of a broader agenda to increase scrutiny of Big Tech/Data companies and their deals impacting the European market.
The buyout process began 17 months ago, with heightened levels of scrutiny predicted by analysts.
Despite a warning from the European Commission that the deal could negatively impact competition in the EU Single Market for robot vacuum makers, the retailer continued to pursue the acquisition.
It has also been reported that Amazon didn’t offer reassurance or implement measures to address these concerns.
Chief among the watchdog’s concerns was Amazon potentially impeding competition from rivals across Europe, especially in France, Germany, Italy and Spain.
However, since the announcement, Amazon has claimed its major online retail presence will not be used to prioritise sales of iRobot vacuums over competitor products.
A decision on the buyout is expected by February 14.