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Brussels, 31 May 2000

Commission approves establishment of packaging joint venture by Techpack International and Aptar/Valois

The Commission has approved the establishment of a joint enterprise by Techpack International S.A., part of the Pechiney group, and Valois S.A., part of AptarGroup, to manufacture packaging for viscous products. The establishment of this joint venture, which will carry on all Techpack and Valois' activities in this industry, does not give rise to objections concerning competition.

Techpack International S.A. is a subsidiary of the French group, Pechiney, an operator in the packaging and aluminium industries. It manufactures and markets plastic tubes, laminated tubes, plastic bottles and containers, and plastic pump-operated dispensers.

Valois, a subsidiary of the American AptarGroup, manufactures packaging products, specialising in closure systems and the distribution of those products, which comprise valves, pumps, and functional closures for pharmaceutical, household and food products.

The joint venture will be set up in the form of a simplified limited company under French law. It will take over all of the parent companies' current manufacturing and marketing activities for plastic pump-operated dispensers and plastic sachets or membranes for viscous products (cosmetics in cream and lotion form, liquid soap, toothpaste and household and food products). Moreover, the parent companies will transfer to the joint venture the manufacturing and marketing operations for pump-operated dispensers and flexible pouches or membranes, in the case of Aptar/Valois, and operations concerning plastic pump-operated dispensers alone, in the case of Techpack International/Pechiney. Those operations will be transferred through partial transfers of assets against securities to be issued by the joint venture.

The Commission's investigation has led it to conclude that, given the joint venture's small share of the market and the presence of major competitors on that market, its establishment does not give rise to doubts concerning the creation of a dominant position.

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