The U.S. government has approved FedEx Corp.'s proposed $4.8 billion acquisition of Dutch delivery company TNT Express, clearing the way for the transaction to close during the first half of next year.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), without comment, approved the merger without any conditions. The FTC's action, which appeared on its docket late Monday, comes a little more than a month after the European Commission (EC), the European Union's antitrust arm, said it would not issue a "statement of objections" to the transaction, effectively clearing the deal on Europe's side.
Obtaining the EC's clearance removed the most critical impediment to the deal's completion. It was expected that European regulators would voice the most opposition to the FedEx-TNT transaction, and all involved in the deal were mindful that it was the EC's concerns about a constraint on European express-delivery competition that forced Atlanta-based UPS Inc., Memphis-based FedEx's chief rival, to withdraw its proposed $6.8 billion buy-out of TNT Express in early 2013.