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Gillette Takeover Cleared in Europe

Procter & Gamble must sell a power toothbrush unit.
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Procter & Gamble's

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$56 billion acquisition of


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won the approval of European antitrust regulators Friday, with conditions.

Cincinnati-based P&G must sell its Spinbrush battery toothbrush operation as part of its agreement with the European Commission. The unit made up about $150 million of the company's $50 billion-plus in revenue last year. P&G hired Merrill Lynch to handle the divestiture.

In a statement, P&G said it expects the acquisition to close in the fall. The transaction was approved by shareholders of both companies earlier this week.

Procter & Gamble shares were recently down 12 cents to $54.63. Gillette traded up 15 cents to $52.78.