Hertz Global Holdings got the U.S. Federal Trade Commission final approval for the acquisition of Dollar Thrifty Automotive Group, for $2.3 billion.
The final approval puts an end to an 8-month compliance review of the deal. Under the recently approved transaction Hertz has to sell its Advantage brand and 29 rental locations to alleviate anti-trust concerns. According to FTC the agreement would have affected competition at 72 airports in the US without this divestiture.
Anonymous sources said that the FTC could have approved the deal in December after the 30-day comment period, but the agency wanted to further investigate how Macquarie, which has purchased Advantage in a JV with Franchise Services of North America Inc., was running the business.
“We are pleased that the FTC has officially concluded its review of the Dollar Thrifty transaction,” said Mark Frissora, chairman and CEO of Park Ridge, New Jersey-based Hertz. “Throughout this process we have worked closely with the agency, and the result has been a transaction that we believe will benefit our customers and shareholders for years to come.”
Virgin Group ahs already expressed its interest in the Advantage assets, seen as a solid way to gain quick access to the largest US airports. Normally, a company must bid for each airport counter once it becomes available.