A PYMNTS Company

EU: Merck’s $17 billion Sigma-Aldrich buy approved

 |  June 15, 2015

The European Commission on Monday approved Merck’s proposed $17 billion purchase of Sigma-Aldrich. This was following the U.S. company’s pledges to sell assets in Germany, reports the Wall Street Journal.

In May, Merck said the European Commission expressed concerns “of a limited nature” over its biggest ever takeover. Merck submitted concessions on May 22, according to a filing on the EU executive’s website. “The decision is conditional on the divestment of certain Sigma-Aldrich assets, including manufacturing assets in Germany, the rights to certain brands and a sales force,” the Commission said in a statement.

“The Commission had concerns that the merged entity would have faced insufficient competitive pressure from the remaining players in the markets for certain laboratory chemicals, with a risk of price rises. The commitments offered by the companies address these concerns.”

The two companies are the leading European suppliers of solvents and inorganics used in labs and research centers, writes the Wall Street Journal. As a result, the two companies have offered to take a series of steps to win approval of the deal. Sigma-Aldrich will sell off its manufacturing assets in Seelze, Germany, where most of the solvents and inorganics sold by Sigma in Europe are made.

Full content: The Wall Street Journal

Want more news? Subscribe to CPI’s free daily newsletter for more headlines and updates on antitrust developments around the world.