Aon Plc said it’s no longer pursuing a combination with rival insurance brokerage Willis Towers Watson Plc, a day after confirming that it was considering a tie-up.

The company said on Tuesday that it was in the early stages of exploring an all-share tie-up with Willis Towers after Bloomberg reported the potential plans. The companies held preliminary talks and Aon was preparing to submit a bid in the coming weeks, people familiar with the matter had said, asking not to be identified as the details aren’t public.

Aon shares fell 7.8 percent in New York on Tuesday, its biggest decline since 2009. A potential combination with Willis — which gained 5.2 percent and had a market value of $23.5 billion at the close of trading — could have been the industry’s largest-ever merger. Willis’s shares declined about 4 percent in early trading Wednesday.

Source Bloomberg | By Nick Lichtenberg and Amy Thomson

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