Compass Lexecon supported Adevinta and eBay in online advertising transaction before UK CMA

We provided economic support to Adevinta and eBay in light of Adevinta’s proposed acquisition of eBay’s Classifieds group.

The $9.2 billion online advertising transaction was agreed upon in July 2020 after long-term pressure by investors on eBay to rationalise its e-commerce business. The deal would create the world’s largest online classifieds group and was under investigation by several competition authorities.

We supported the Parties during merger proceedings before the UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), as well as the Bundeskartellamt in Germany and the Bundeswettbewerbsbehörde in Austria. We provided economic analysis on market definition and market concentration for the B2C and C2C classified segments. We performed an in-depth analysis of customer overlap and switching rates to illustrate competitive constraints exerted by differentiated digital classified platforms from both a buyer and seller perspective, including taking account of partial ownership within a GUPPI framework. We also developed supplementary analysis on vertical effects and interpretation of customer survey design.

The transaction was cleared, conditionally upon undertakings, by the CMA in June 2021. It also received clearance in Germany and Austria.

The Compass Lexecon team, led by John Davies, included Anton Garcia, Rui Pratinha, Daniel George and David Jubete Blanco. They worked with teams from Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP, led by Enrique González-Díaz, and from Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan LLP, led by Trevor Soames.