The amalgamation of Westpac and St George looks likely to go ahead following the ACCC’s approval of the merger yesterday afternoon.
The proposed acquisition was unlikely to substantially lessen competition under section 50 of the Trade Practices Act, the competition watchdog found.
“While St George Bank is a relatively innovative and dynamic competitor with a strong focus on customer service, other competitors to the merged entity which remain in the market will continue to play a similar role,” ACCC chairman Graeme Samual said.
Competition in retail banking markets provided by other “major banks and regional banks along with credit unions, building societies and niche players, would be sufficient to constrain the merged firm after the acquisition”, he said.
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