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eBay’s $9.2bn Gumtree deal raises competition concerns, says CMA

Photograph: Alamy

A $9.2bn (£6.5bn) deal to create the world’s largest classified ads business could reduce consumer choice and increase the fees people are charged for advertising goods online, Britain’s competition watchdog has warned.

Shpock operator Adevinta’s proposed purchase of Gumtree from eBay would combine websites that allow people to buy and sell used or new items such as clothes, electronics and furniture. The eBay marketplace is the largest such platform in the UK.

However the Competition and Markets Authority said it was concerned the merger could lead to a loss of competition between Shpock, Gumtree and eBay’s marketplace, with only Facebook Marketplace remaining as a big competitor.

“This could reduce consumer choice, increase fees or lower innovation in the supply of platforms that allow people to buy and sell goods online,” it said.

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