OFT paves way for Indie sale

THE Office of Fair Trading (OFT) has paved the way for ex-KGB man Alexander Lebedev to buy the Independent, after ruling it would not launch an investigation over competition issues.

Lebedev recently bought a 75 per cent stake in the London Evening Standard. The OFT had until 26 April to decide whether to investigate but said the firm did not qualify.

The Russian oligarch must still overcome issues surrounding an existing £35m printing contract. However, industry sources say this is close to being resolved already.