The US Federal Trade Commission has approved a final order settling charges that Ardagh Group SA’s USD 1.7 billion proposed acquisition of Saint-Gobain Container would harm competition in the markets for glass containers.
Following a public comment period, the Federal Trade Commission has approved a final order settling charges that Ardagh Group SA’s USD 1.7 billion proposed acquisition of Saint-Gobain Containers, Inc. would likely harm competition in the markets for glass containers sold to beer brewers and spirits distillers.
The FTC’s administrative complaint, issued in July 2013, alleged that the proposed acquisition would concentrate most of the USD 5 billion US glass container industry in two companies – the newly combined Ardagh/Saint-Gobain and Owens-Illinois, Inc. If the merger had proceeded as proposed, these two companies would have controlled about 85% of the glass container market for brewers and 77% of the market for distillers, reducing competition and likely leading to higher prices for customers buying glass containers for beer or spirits.
In settling the FTC’s complaint, Ardagh agreed to sell six of the manufacturing plants and related assets it acquired through its 2012 acquisition of Anchor Glass Container Corporation, along with Anchor’s former corporate headquarters in Tampa, Fla. The six plants are located in Elmira, N.Y.; Jacksonville, Fla.; Warner Robins, Ga.; Henryetta, Okla.; Lawrenceburg, Ind.; and Shakopee, Minn.
In a separate action, the Commission approved Ardagh’s application to sell the six manufacturing plants and related assets to Glass Container Acquisition LLC, an affiliate of KPS Capital Partners L.P., as required under the now final settlement order.