Publishing Merger Abandoned After CMA Investigation

McGraw-Hill Education has abandoned its proposed deal with Cengage Learning after competition concerns raised by the CMA

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has, therefore, today confirmed that it will be cancelling its Phase 2 merger investigation into the takeover.

McGraw-Hill and Cengage are 2 leading education publishers, producing textbooks and associated materials for higher education students.

After completing its initial Phase 1 investigation in March 2020, the CMA found that the proposed deal raised competition concerns that could mean students pay more for their textbooks. The companies offered proposals to address these concerns but the CMA considered these were unlikely to be sufficient in addressing its competition concerns and so the merger was referred for an in-depth, Phase 2, investigation. The CMA subsequently paused its investigation for 3 weeks while the companies decided whether to proceed with the deal.

McGraw-Hill and Cengage have now decided to abandon the deal so the CMA will be cancelling its investigation.

In reviewing this deal, the CMA worked closely with a number of other national competition authorities, including the US Department of Justice, the Australian Consumer & Competition Commission and the New Zealand Competition Commission, again highlighting the benefits of international cooperation in merger control.

For more information, visit the McGraw-Hill Education / Cengage Learning Holdings merger inquiry web page.