• The Competition Commission (CC) has provisionally concluded that the completed acquisition by Capita Group plc (Capita) of IBS OPENSystems plc (IBS) could damage compe-tition in the market for the supply of revenues and benefits software to local authorities in the UK. Before the merger, both Capita and IBS sold revenues and benefits software, which is used by local authorities to collect council tax and business rates revenue and to make certain benefit payments.

Christopher Clarke, Inquiry Group Chairman, commented: This merger combines two closely competing suppliers of revenues and benefits software to local authorities, leaving only one other supplier actively competing for business. In a stable market with little prospect of entry by new suppliers, our provisional conclusion is that the enlarged Capita revenue and benefits business will be able to take advantage of the lack of competition, for example by increasing prices or reducing levels of service to its customers.


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