The European Commission has approved the £4.43 billion takeover of UK can maker Rexam by US packaging giant Ball Corp, subject to competition allowances.
According to Packaging News, Ball Corp can complete the takeover after it divests 12 of its current can-making operations in the UK and the rest of Europe.
After a review, the Commission determined that selling said other plants would have been necessary to allow the merger, or competition in the market would have been significantly reduced. In an already concentrated market, such a takeover would risk increasing prices unless some divestments were made, said the Commission.
"The Commission’s approval is therefore conditional upon Ball divesting ten plants making can bodies and two plants making can ends to a suitable purchaser, so as to address the Commission’s concerns," read an EU statement.
Ball Corp and Rexam are the two world-leaders in beverage can manufacturing. The 12 divested businesses have a total manufacturing capacity of over 18 billion cans. The two other major European players, Can-Pack and Crown, are said to be interested in bidding for the plants.
© 2016 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by John Golden. To subscribe to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine, click here.