A merger between two private firms – Acorn Care Education Group and the National Fostering Agency Group (among the largest providers of foster placement services to councils in England, Scotland and Wales), is to be investigated due to concerns it has created a monopoly.
Following an initial investigation, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has announced it will proceed with a more detailed “phase 2” merger investigation because of concerns that councils in some areas may now struggle to achieve value for money.
The market for independent fostering placement services is worth in excess of £750m a year and the companies are two of the largest national providers to local authorities.
Read the full piece at source: Major £400m fostering services merger faces probe
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