Austin, TX – It's clear sailing for to move forward with the purchase of Whole Foods Market for $13.7 billion.

Shareholders approved the deal on Wednesday morning and a few hours later, Bruce Hoffman, acting director of the Federal Trade Commission's Bureau of Competition, said the agency had decided not to pursue an investigation further.

“The FTC conducted an investigation of this proposed acquisition to determine whether it substantially lessened competition under Section 7 of the Clayton Act, or constituted an unfair method of competition under Section 5 of the FTC Act," Hoffman said. "Based on our investigation we have decided not to pursue this matter further. Of course, the FTC always has the ability to investigate anticompetitive conduct should such action be warranted.”

Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods Market moves one step forward as Whole Foods shareholders voted to approve a merger with the internet giant on Wednesday morning.

Now, completion of the transaction is subject to regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions. The two are preparing to seal their $13.7 billion deal, which would also mark the biggest retail deal of 2017.

The parties expect to finalize the merger during the second half of 2017. Though, a source familiar with the matter has told CNBC the deal could happen sooner rather than later.

Published on WholeFoods Magazine Online, 8/23/17. This story was updated after its original publication.

(WholeFoods Magazine is not affiliated with Whole Foods Market.)