By Foo Yun Chee
BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Business information provider S&P Global Inc on Friday moved a step closer to market-leading duo Bloomberg and Refinitiv after gaining EU antitrust approval for its $44 billion takeover of IHS Markit.
S&P announced the proposed deal last November, continuing sector consolidation as companies sought to create one-stop shops to attract the biggest clients and invest in artificial intelligence and machine learning.
The European Commission approved the deal on condition S&P sells IHS Markit's U.S Oil Pricing Agency Oil Price Information Service (OPIS), PetroChemWire and its coal, metals and mining businesses to resolve overlaps in price assessments for oil, coal, biofuels and petrochemicals.
S&P had already clinched a deal in August to sell these assets to News Corp for $1.15 billion.
It also agreed to sell its CUSIP issuance and data licensing business and leveraged loan 100 index family and its leveraged loan market intelligence product Loan Commentary and Data (LCD).
"With this conditional approval the problematic overlaps in commodity price assessments, and also in the area of loan identifiers and indices, are fully removed," European antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager said in a statement.
Reuters exclusively reported on Oct. 12 that S&P would win EU approval for the deal.
S&P Global is a distant third behind Bloomberg and Refinitiv in terms of annual revenue, based on data from market research firm Burton-Taylor.
Thomson Reuters, parent of Reuters News, competes with Platts, Argus and OPIS in providing news and information to oil markets.
(Reporting by Foo Yun Chee; Editing by Louise Heavens and David Goodman)