The EC found that although the deal would create France’s biggest auditor for large and quoted companies there was ‘no danger of the creation of a single dominant position’.
A number of large customers had already gone, due to the loss of Andersen Worldwide’s reputation, and there would inevitably be other significant business losses, thereby reducing the gap between the new company and the Big Four firms, the Commission said.
It concluded that the merger ‘would not lead to competition problems in this market’.
In 2001, E&Y France had an annual fee income of Euro 373.5m (£228.9m), whilst Andersen’s fee income was Euro 416m (£254.9m).
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