CMA bolsters manpower to take on Brexit merger challenges

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The Competition and Markets Authority’s (CMA) is taking steps to prepare itself for the impact Brexit could have on its job.

It has appointed Joel Bamford and Colin Raftery to new roles as part of its preparation for the UK exiting the EU, when it is expected there will be a significant increase in the number and complexity of the merger inquiries it will conduct.

As well as strengthening its senior management team, the CMA, which is responsible for strengthening business competition and preventing anti-competitive activities, will also be recruiting a number of extra personnel to work on mergers cases.

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The appointments of Bamford and Raferty, both previously directors of mergers at the CMA, follow an open recruitment process that attracted applications from a strong field of candidates.

Together with Andrea Gomes da Silva, executive director for Markets and Mergers, the pair will take decisions in the more complex Phase 1 merger cases.

In addition, they will oversee the merger group’s work across both the phase 1 and 2 portfolios, leading the CMA’s multi-disciplinary teams investigating mergers across a wide range of sectors.

They take up their appointments on 1 September 2018 and will report to Andrea Gomes da Silva.

In May, the CMA said it is aware of the “important and serious issues” Brexit could throw up, including challenges and practical problems for competition law and policy that it says will need to be addressed.

The CMA said it recognises a number of challenges that the UK’s departure from the EU could bring and hamper its ability to regulate anti-competitive practices and handle mergers.

Image: Joel Bamford and Colin Raftery. Credit: CMA

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Joe Peskett

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