Illumina Will Have to Divest Grail After EU Blocks Takeover

BRUSSELS—U.S. life sciences firm Illumina will have to divest biotechnology company Grail after an EU veto of the $7.1 billion acquisition over concerns it would hurt competition and stifle innovation.
The European Commission, which acts as the competition enforcer in the 27-country bloc, said on Tuesday that Illumina’s remedies did not adequately address its concerns.
Illumina completed the deal in August last year ahead of EU regulatory approval, resulting in an EU order to keep Grail separate and appoint independent managers to run the company until the investigation’s conclusion.
“Our in depth investigation confirmed our initial concerns. It showed that Illumina holding a dominant position in NGS systems would have both the ability and the incentive to obstruct rivals,” EU antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager told a news conference, referring to next generation sequencing (NGS)….
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