The Office of Fair Trading in the UK has cleared Amazon to take over The Book Depository, ruling the merger would not lead to a lessening of competition within the UK book industry.
The OFT decided there was limited pre-merger competition between the two companies and found that competition within Amazon Marketplace would continue to be strong after the takeover. It said The Book Depository only accounted for between 2-4% of the online market for physical books, and that TBD had most of its growth in overseas markets rather than the UK.
During its investigation, the OFT looked at the levels of competition between top selling titles and “deep range”, less popular books. It found for popular titles Amazon would face strong post-merger competition from bricks and mortar booksellers, supermarkets and other online retailers, including other Amazon Marketplace sellers. For deep range titles, the OFT decided Amazon would face rivalry from other online retailers and Amazon Marketplace sellers.