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European Commission Approves GE Acquisition of Amersham

NEW YORK, Jan. 21 (GenomeWeb News) - European Union regulators today gave a thumbs-up to General Electric's proposed $9.5 billion acquisition of Amersham.

 

In a statement, the Commission said that its investigation showed that its concerns about possible "conglomerate effects" from a merger were unlikely.

 

". . . Neither GE nor Amersham hold dominant positions in their respective products in Europe," the Commission wrote. "The proposed acquisition does not lead to horizontal overlaps."

 

Further, the Commission said that both companies face competition from manufacturers Philips, Siemens, and Toshiba, as well as the pharmaceutical companies such as Schering, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Tyco/Mallinckrodt, and Bracco.

 

Conglomerate effects include, the Commission said, technical tying of Amersham's products to work best with GE equipment, or the possibility of bundling products at a better price than the sum of the individual products.

 

The Commission "ascertained" that there was "perfect interoperability between the different existing equipment and pharmaceutical products, and that such interoperability was unlikely to be reduced when new products come to the market."

 

The Commission said that antitrust authorities in the US and Canada cooperated with its investigation.

 

Click here to see European Commission statement.

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