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IP/10/1272

Brussels, 30 September 2010

Mergers: Commission approves joint acquisition of Belgian hygiene disposables company Ontex by investment funds Goldman Sachs and TPG

The European Commission has cleared under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed joint acquisition of Ontex International N.V., a Belgian hygiene disposables producer, by the Goldman Sachs Group and TPG Group Holdings. After examining the operation, the Commission concluded that the transaction would not significantly impede effective competition in the European Economic Area (EEA) or any substantial part of it.

Ontex manufactures and markets a full range of hygiene disposable products comprising baby care, feminine hygiene and adult incontinence products.

Goldman Sachs is a global investment banking and securities firm. TPG is a holding vehicle for various investment funds. One of the private equity funds belonging to TPG controls the Vita Group, a supplier of nonwoven polymers ("nonwovens"), that are used for the production of hygiene disposable products.

The Commission investigated the vertical relationship resulting from the joint venture between the upstream market for nonwovens and the downstream markets for hygiene disposables.

The Commission concluded that for all products concerned the combined entity will continue to face strong competition. Therefore, it would lack the ability to restrict the access by Ontex' competitors to the input supplied by Vita, or to limit the outlet possibilities for Vita's competitors. The Commission therefore found that the proposed concentration would not give rise to any competition concerns.

The transaction was notified to the Commission on 26 August 2010. More information on the case is available at:

http://ec.europa.eu/competition/elojade/isef/case_details.cfm?proc_code=2_M_5958


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