Source - Alliance News

In the latest update on Wednesday to the UK competition regulator's investigation into Babcock International Group PLC's sale of its offshore helicopter business, CHC Group LLC has disputed the body's preliminary findings.

Last month, the UK Competition & Markets Authority had provisionally found that CHC's purchase of Babcock's helicopter business would lead to a ‘significant’ loss of market competition.

Responding to possible remedies outlined by the CMA, Canadian helicopter services company CHC said on Wednesday: ‘This conclusion has been reached despite clear findings of fact by the CMA that negative market dynamics (including excessive price pressure resulting in fierce competition for loss-making contracts) will continue to prevail and prices will continue to fall even if the merger is cleared.’

CHC said it would address separately ‘errors of analysis, contradictions and incorrect assessment

of the evidence’ that it believes are behind the CMA's conclusions.

CHC urged the regulator not to pursue ‘disproportionate’ measures, but instead advocated a structural remedy to address any competition concerns. This would be less costly and intrusive, CHC said.

Babcock has not yet responded to the provisional findings ahead of Thursday's deadline. The watchdog will make a final ruling on the deal by May 15.

Shares in Babcock were marginally lower to 323.20 pence each in London on Wednesday morning.

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