In August, the ACCC rejected ANZ’s offer to buy Suncorp Bank, insisting that allowing the group to swoop for Suncorp’s banking arm would create a banking oligopoly in Australia.
However, The Sydney Morning Herald’s latest report revealed that ANZ and Suncorp will try to overturn the competition watchdog’s decision over nine days of hearings, with barristers from both groups aiming to convince the Australian Competition Tribunal that the deal will not significantly lessen competition in the Australian mortgage market.
In a submission to the tribunal last month, ANZ argued that buying Suncorp Bank would create a more efficient bank that could compete with banking giant Commonwealth Bank, as savings from the merger would be passed on to customers.
“Scale benefits will not dilute ANZ’s incentives to compete to retain Suncorp Bank’s customers, who can readily switch to other banks,” ANZ added, as reported by The Sydney Morning Herald.
The Australian Competition Tribunal’s final ruling is expected to be released early next year.