19-10-2012 — /europawire.eu/ — The European Commission has cleared under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of the German press manufacturer Schuler by the Austrian plants and equipment supplier Andritz. The Commission concluded that the transaction would not raise competition concerns, because it would not significantly alter the market structure and the merged entity would continue to face sufficient competition.
The Commission’s investigation examined the impact of the proposed transaction on the market for mechanical single presses for sheet metal forming, where both companies are active. Mechanical single presses are tools for forming metal parts from sheet metal and are sold to clients in the automotive, household appliances, fittings, motors and generators industries.
The Commission’s investigation showed that a number of press manufacturers were active in Europe, in particular in the smaller pressing force ranges. In the higher pressing force ranges, where supply is more concentrated, contracts are usually awarded on the basis of tenders. The Commission found that the parties are not each other’s closest competitors in these tenders and that customers would have sufficient alternative suppliers.
The Commission also considered the parties’ activities in supplying repair and maintenance services and automation systems for mechanical single presses. The Commission’s investigation confirmed that the proposed transaction would not raise competition concerns on these markets as the parties’ market shares are limited.
The Commission therefore concluded that the transaction would not significantly impede effective competition in the European Economic Area (EEA).
The transaction was notified to the Commission on 10 September 2012.
Companies and products
Andritz is a global manufacturer and supplier of systems, equipment and services for hydropower, the pulp industry, industrial solid-liquid separation, and the steel and metal industry, as well as for the production of animal feed and biomass pellets.
Schuler is active worldwide in the field of metal forming and supplies plants, tools and process know-how for the metalworking industry. In addition, Schuler operates in the field of coin minting technology and sells system solutions for the aerospace and rail industry.
Merger control rules and procedures
The Commission has the duty to assess mergers and acquisitions involving companies with a turnover above certain thresholds (see Article 1 of the Merger Regulation) and to prevent concentrations that would significantly impede effective competition in the EEA or any substantial part of it.
The vast majority of notified mergers do not pose competition problems and are cleared after a routine review. From the moment a transaction is notified, the Commission generally has a total of 25 working days to decide whether to grant approval (Phase I) or to start an in-depth investigation (Phase II).
More information on the case is available at:
Antoine Colombani (+32 2 297 45 13)
Marisa Gonzalez Iglesias (+32 2 295 19 25)