Following a ruling from the UK Competitions and Mergers Authority (CMA), LKQ has closed 10 Andrew Page stores with immediate effect.
The US company, owner of Euro Car Parts, purchased Andrew Page and its 102 branches in October 2016. However the acquisition caught the eye of the UK authorities, which was concerned that the company would own a monopoly in the industry. Preliminary findings, published in September last year, revealed that customers could lose out in ten areas by limiting competition.
A statement released by the chair of the CMA enquiry, Alasdair Smith, at the time said: “Andrew Page was in administration and would have closed down if a purchaser had not been found. The only two other purchasers would have bought a much smaller number of depots. We think that in most markets the merger will not further reduce competition compared to the alternative.
“However, in 10 local areas we are concerned that a reduction in competition could lead to higher prices and a lower quality of service.”
The notice recommended that in order to aid local competition, Euro Car Pars should sell Andrew Page branches in the ten affected areas.
The company has now complied with the findings of the UK government body, reducing its Andrew Page branches to 92. However, not all of those closed are in the areas highlighted by the enquiry.
In an emailed statement to Auto Repair Focus, a spokesperson for Euro Car Parts said: “We can confirm that we have closed 10 Andrew Page branches, following the completion of a recent business operational review by the Andrew Page Management team.
“There are no plans to close any further Andrew Page branches. We are currently working with employees at affected branches to look for alternative options within the ECP or Andrew Page network, and working closely with customers of these affected branches.”
LKQ has maintained that it will allow Euro Car Parts and Andrew Page to run as separate businesses with their own management structure, in another effort to aid competition and ensure there is no monopoly in the industry.