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Amazon Objections Can’t Stop India’s $3.4B Retail Mega Deal

Amazon’s opposition couldn’t stand in the way of two Indian retail giants moving ahead with their merger.

Indias’ largest retail group, Reliance Retail got the go ahead to acquire Future Group, the nation’s No. 2, in a deal valued at $3.4 billion.

The two agreed to the deal in August, pending regulatory approval, which the Competition Commission of India (CCI) offered on Friday. In the deal, Reliance will also acquire Future’s logistics and warehousing operations.

Amazon had raised objections to the transaction, citing a separate Singapore arbitration order that purports to halt the deal between Reliance and Future, although it wasn’t clear if it had any binding impact on the CCI.

The deal will give Reliance another 1,800 doors from Future Group, which operates under nameplates including Big Bazaar, Central and Foodhall. The store operations are slated to be placed under the umbrella of Reliance affiliate Reliance Retail and Fashion Lifestyle Limited, while the logistics and warehouse operations will become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Reliance Retail Ventures Ltd.

Reliance in September was said to have kicked the tires in a possible quest for U.K.’s insolvent Debenhams fashion chain, but it wasn’t clear if the Indian conglomerate was interested in the entire operation or just some of its stores. Debenhams remains in administration, the U.K. equivalent of a U.S. bankruptcy.