After facing opposition from regulators, United Parcel Service (NYSE:UPS) announced on Monday that it is abandoning its bid to acquire Europe’s second largest package delivery company.
UPS had offered to sell parts of TNT Express NV’s operations in order to satisfy European regulators, who complained in October that the deal would lower competition. However, after meeting with regulators on Friday, UPS indicated that the acquisition was unlikely to receive regulatory approval and walked away from the merger, the Associated Press noted.
That sent TNT Express shares tumbling on European exchanges. The company’s shares plunged about 50% on Monday before recovering slightly.
UPS revealed its plans to acquire TNT Express in March for $6.9 billion. The purchase would have allowed it to better compete with Europe’s leading package delivery firm Deutsche Post‘s (PINK:DPSGY) DHL. TNT Express will receive a $265.5 million break fee from UPS now that the merger isn’t going forward.
In April, rival shipping giant FedEx (NYSE:FDX) said that it would acquire Poland-based shipping company Opek, expanding its presence in Europe.
Shares of UPS rose more than 1% in Monday morning trading.