(Reuters) – Britain’s competition regulator served an initial enforcement order on Amazon <AMZN.O> and Deliveroo on Friday, seeking to pause the e-commerce giant’s investment in the online food delivery company.
Amazon led a $575 million (457 million pounds) fundraising in Deliveroo in May, pitting itself against Uber Eats in the global race to dominate the market for takeaway meal deliveries.
An initial enforcement order is put in place to prevent businesses from pressing ahead with a tie-up, while the regulator decides if it needs to launch an investigation.
It is used if the regulator suspects that two enterprises “have ceased to be distinct”, or that arrangements are in progress, or in contemplation, which could result in the enterprises “ceasing to be distinct”.
Deliveroo said the two companies had been working closely with regulators to obtain their approval.
“There are a number of major companies within the restaurant food delivery sector and this investment will enable Deliveroo to expand, innovate and, we believe, will enhance competition,” a spokesman said.
“This investment will help create jobs, help restaurants to grow their businesses and will improve choice for consumers.”
Amazon had no immediate comment.
(Reporting by Noor Zainab Hussain in Bengaluru and Kate Holton in London; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty and James Davey)