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EU: Ball hires Goldman Sachs to sell 11 plants to appease antitrust regulators

 |  November 26, 2015

US drinks can maker Ball Corp is ready to sell 11 European plants to get EU antitrust regulators to approve its $6.69 billion acquisition of Britain’s Rexam, people familiar with the matter said.

The world’s two largest beverage can makers by volume want to merge to better manage capital spending and cut costs. The European Commission, however, fears the deal would push up prices for companies and consumers.

The combined company would have 60 percent of the beverage can market in North America, 69 percent in Europe and 74 percent in Brazil, according to Morningstar analysts.

Ball is prepared to divest four factories in Germany, three in the UK, one each in Spain, France, the Netherlands and Austria, the sources said on Wednesday. Nine of the plants make cans and two of them can ends. The offer was submitted to the Commission last week.

Ball has said it is willing to sell more than $1.58 billion worth of assets to allay regulatory concerns. The company is also in discussions with antitrust authorities in the United States about assets it may have to divest in that country.

Full content: Reuters

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