The planned purchase of Dromore plant and machinery auction house Euro Auctions for £775 million has been abandoned by global asset management, disposition, and services company, Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers.

The decision by Canada-based Ritchie Bros. to call off the purchase follows after the UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) referred the deal for an in-depth Phase 2 investigation.

A spokesperson for Ritchie Bros. explained that after extensive consideration, Ritchie Bros. does not believe there is any realistic prospect for approval by the CMA on such terms, given the significant concerns raised by the CMA, to date.

SEE ALSO: Tyrone company Euro Auctions to be sold to Ritchie Bros

It has been reported that the firms were the two major auction providers for heavy equipment in the UK, raising concerns that a merger would bring down competition and raise prices for clients in construction.

Both firms were reported to have offered ways to have addressed such concerns; however, the CMA called for the second review in March.

Ann Fandozzi, the company's Chief Executive Officer, said: "We are disappointed by the decision taken by the CMA to refer the proposed acquisition to a Phase 2 review, and respectfully disagree with their views.

"While we believe the proposed acquisition would have accelerated our strategy, we remain committed to forging ahead in our transformational journey to become the trusted global marketplace for insights, services and transaction solutions.

"We will continue to seek out and execute on organic investments and key acquisitions to accelerate our pace in achieving our ultimate vision."

The Sale and Purchase Agreement dated August 9, 2021, pursuant to which Ritchie Bros. had agreed to purchase Euro Auctions Limited, William Keys & Sons Holdings Limited, Equipment & Plant Services Ltd and Equipment Sales Ltd., will automatically terminate on June 28.