On 1 October 2010, the French Competition Authority (the
'Authority') opened an in-depth investigation into the
acquisition of Eurochem by Univar, following an initial
investigation into the acquisition's impact on the French
On 16 July 2010, the European Commission ('Commission')
partially approved the proposed acquisition and referred the part
of the acquisition relating to Eurochem's activities in France
to the Authority at its request.
Univar and Eurochem are both active in the sector of
distribution of commodities and specialities chemicals.
The Commission's investigation found that the horizontal
overlaps would not give rise to competition concerns in Belgium and
the Netherlands, but, due to a different competitive landscape in
France, competition could be restricted there. The Commission
stated that, in the West of France particularly, competitors would
not put sufficient constraints on the merged entity and the merger
could lead to a reduction in the number of national players in the
This in-depth investigation was to be carried out in sixty-five
working days with the possibility of lengthening this timeframe if
However, since the launch of the investigation, notification of
the proposed acquisition has been withdrawn by Univar
To view Community Week, Issue 494; 22nd October 2010
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