Two leading consulting firms specializing in human resources management announced that their proposed merger has been tentatively approved by a European regulator.

Towers, Perrin, Forster & Crosby Inc., Stamford, Conn. and Watson Wyatt Worldwide Inc. Arlington, Va., say that they have been granted conditional clearance from the European Commission to allow them to proceed with their merger to form Towers Watson & Co.

As part of the commission’s clearance decision, Watson Wyatt must sell its life insurance actuarial software business, VIPitech, the companies said. The merged company may keep a license to use VIPitech, which will allow it to continue to serve clients that have adopted the software, they said.

U.S. antitrust authorities previously cleared the transaction, the companies noted in announcing the approval.