New Zealand's competition watchdog has begun a probe into the local effects of Pernod Ricard's takeover of Allied Domecq.

The country's Commerce Commission said yesterday (1 May) that it would investigate the competitive implications of Pernod keeping hold of assets that it was set to sell off following the Allied takeover.

Last July, the Commission cleared the deal on the grounds that the French drinks giant would voluntarily give up a roster of brands including sparkling wines Lindauer and Aquila.

"Pernod Ricard would lose the benefit of this clearance decision if the divestment undertakings are not completed," the Commission said.

Officials at Pernod failed to return requests for comment as just-drinks went to press.