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European Commission Blocks Hutchison's $15 Billion Purchase of U.K.'s O2


The European Commission today dashed any residual hopes that CK Hutchison would be able to create Britain's leading wireless services company by merging its 3G UK unit with the O2 business of Spain's Telefónica (TEF - Get Report) by slapping a veto on the £10.2 billion ($14.9 billion) transaction.

As widely expected, Brussels antitrust regulators nixed the proposal, citing "strong concerns" that the elimination of one of Britain's four wireless services providers would push up prices for U.K. consumers and lead to less choice. It said that remedies offered by Hutchison to address concerns raised during its in-depth review were...