Pennon Group PLC - Exeter-based water utility - The UK Competition & Markets Authority invites comments on Pennon's agreement to buy Sutton & East Surrey Water PLC, which was announced last month. The CMA had immediately served an initial enforcement order on Pennon in relation to the acquisition. Pennon agreed in January to buy Sumisho Osaka Gas Water UK Ltd and related businesses from Sumitomo Corp and Osaka Gas for GBP89 million, with the deal representing an enterprise value including debt of GBP380 million. Sumisho Osaka owns Sutton & East Surrey Water, or SES Water. The competition watchdog on Tuesday says it has not yet launched a formal investigation into the deal, but it is considering "whether the creation of that situation is likely to prejudice [water industry regulator] Ofwat's ability, in carrying out its functions, to make comparisons between water enterprises."

Current stock price: 665.00 pence

12-month change: down 21%

By Tom Waite, Alliance News editor

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