WMFAddison_store.jpg Whole Foods Market

FTC, shareholders OK Amazon-Whole Foods deal

No counteroffers emerge; Amazon eyes closing

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) said Wednesday it has given its blessing to Amazon’s proposed acquisition of Whole Foods.

“The FTC conducted an investigation of this proposed acquisition to determine whether it substantially lessened competition under Section 7 of the Clayton Act, or constituted an unfair method of competition under Section 5 of the FTC Act,” Bruce Hoffman, acting director of the FTC’s Bureau of Competition, said in a statement. “Based on our investigation we have decided not to pursue this matter further. Of course, the FTC always has the ability to investigate anticompetitive conduct should such action be warranted.”

The statement came the same day as shareholders of Whole Foods reportedly voted to approve the $13.7 billion takeover. Amazon has said it would look to close the deal in the second half of the year following regulatory and Whole Foods shareholders approval and other customary closing conditions.

Some analysts and investors had held out hope that a counteroffer would emerge but the $42-per-share offer Amazon announced in June will evidently prevail.

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