UK probes Hewlett Packard Enterprise's $14 billion deal for Juniper Networks

FILE PHOTO: Figurines with computers and smartphones are seen in front of Hewlett Packard Enterprise logo in this illustration taken, February 19, 2024. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration/File Photo

(Reuters) -Britain's competition regulator said on Wednesday it was investigating whether Hewlett Packard Enterprise's planned $14 billion acquisition of Juniper Networks would result in competition concerns in the country.

The Competition and Markets Authority has until Aug. 14 to decide whether it would refer the deal for a deeper probe.

Hewlett Packard Enterprise, or HPE, said in January it would buy networking gear maker Juniper to enhance its artificial intelligence (AI) offerings.

HPE expects to double its networking business through the deal, which came as the AI gold rush has led companies to pour billions of dollars into upgrading and developing their technology.

HPE continues to expect to close the deal by the end of 2024 or early next year as it works with the UK regulator to complete necessary reviews and secure clearance as soon as possible, the company said in an email to Reuters.

U.S.-based Juniper did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment. The U.S. market is closed for the Juneteenth holiday.

(Reporting by Radhika Anilkumar in Bengaluru; Additional reporting by Yamini Kalia, Editing by Savio D'Souza and Elaine Hardcastle)

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