Deoleo has said it is hopeful that an investigation by Spanish competition authorities into the purchase of a stake in the company by Spanish olive oil cooperative Hojiblanca will see the deal approved.

Hojiblanca agreed to acquire a near 10% stake in local rival Deoleo in October. The transaction will see Hojiblanca take a 9.63% share in Deloeo, formerly Grupo SOS, in return for transferring ownership of its brand and Málaga bottling plant to its rival.

However, according to local press, Spanish authorities are investigating the implications that the acquisition will have on competition in the market.

A spokesperson for Deoleo told just-food today (11 January): “All we can say is that we are in a second part of the process, in which we have to provide the information requested by the authorities, and we hope that the investigation will end in a positive verdict for the operation.”

Kepler analyst Joaquin Garcia-Romanillos believes the competition authorities may take “longer than initially expected to clear the deal”, and eventually ask for some “remedies” that would need to be analysed in detail.