By Dave Sebastian

 

Aon PLC and Willis Towers Watson PLC said they have agreed to terminate their roughly $30 billion deal and end litigation with the U.S. Department of Justice, which said the combination would eliminate competition in several different U.S. product markets.

"We reached an impasse with the U.S. Department of Justice," Aon CEO Greg Case said Monday. "The DOJ position overlooks that our complementary businesses operate across broad, competitive areas of the economy."

"The inability to secure an expedited resolution of the litigation brought us to this point," Mr. Case said.

Aon said it would pay a $1 billion termination fee to Willis Towers Watson.

The European Commission earlier this month cleared the proposed acquisition of Willis Towers Watson by Aon, its rival, subject to meeting certain commitments offered by Aon over potential competition breaches. The European Union's antitrust authority said the commitments include the divestment of central units of Willis Towers Watson to brokerage Arthur J. Gallagher, which would improve the brokerage's footprint in the European Economic Area.

Aon and Willis Towers Watson announced their deal in March 2020. The brokerages help companies buy insurance and advise them on risk management. Both companies are also major consultants to businesses on health and other benefit packages for their employees.

 

Write to Dave Sebastian at dave.sebastian@wsj.com

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

July 26, 2021 08:29 ET (12:29 GMT)

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