On April 30, 2015, the Competition Bureau filed an application to challenge a proposed
merger between two major gas retailers, Parkland and Pioneer.
Parkland proposed to acquire 181 gas stations and 212 supply
contracts from Pioneer in 14 communities in Ontario and
The Bureau claimed that the proposed merger is likely to
substantially lessen competition in the already
concentrated relevant markets. The Bureau estimated that
the combined post-merger market shares of Parkland and
Pioneer in the 14 communities would be between 39 to 100 percent.
The level of competition would also be affected by the significant
increase in the extent, likelihood, frequency and duration of
coordination among some or all of the suppliers in the markets.
In its application, the Bureau also referred
to a number of factors under section 93 of
the Competition Act to support its opposition to the
merger, which include:
no alternative substitutes to fuel vehicles for
barriers to entry into the relevant markets due to market
maturity, environmental and regulatory approvals, and the
well-entrenched incumbency positions of Parkland and Pioneer
insufficient effective competition remaining in the market
elimination of rivalry between Parkland and Pioneer as a result
of the merger
The Competition Bureau is seeking an order prohibiting
Parkland from implementing the proposed merger, and requiring
Parkland to dispose of certain assets in the relevant markets. In
the interim, the Bureau will also be seeking an injunction
requiring that Parkland preserve and operate independently the
assets to be acquired from Pioneer until a decision is reached by
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