Brussels, 18 March 2010
Mergers: the Commission approves the acquisition of several water collection, treatment and supply companies by Lyonnaise des Eaux
Under the EU Merger Regulation the European Commission has approved the proposed purchase by Lyonnaise des Eaux ("LDE") of shares held by Veolia Eau-Compagnie Générale des Eaux ("Veolia Eau") in seven subsidiaries owned jointly with Veolia Eau, and in an eighth wholly owned by Veolia Eau. The Commission found that the merger would not significantly restrict effective competition in the European Economic Area (EEA) or any substantial part of it.
On 5 August 2009 the Commission authorised LDE to take exclusive control of six of the eight companies concerned, of which it previously had joint control with Veolia Eau (see IP/09/1209 and IP/09/1225).
On 3 February 2010, an addendum to the protocol initially notified provided for the sale by Veolia Eau to LDE of its shares in two additional companies: Société Stéphanoise des Eaux and Société Nancéenne des Eaux.
Since the scope of the transaction authorised by the Commission on 5 August 2009 had been extended, on 10 February 2010 LDE notified the whole of the transaction including the part for which it had already obtained authorisation, in accordance with the practice established by the Commission.
LDE is a subsidiary of the GDF Suez group, which is active throughout the water cycle, from the production of drinking water to the treatment of waste water. It also provides customer management services and carries out work on installations and supply networks.
The companies of which LDE is planning to acquire exclusive control are active in water supply and treatment in France.
The Commission’s investigations have indicated that the proposed transaction would have no detrimental effect on competition in the markets concerned, given the limited market shares of the companies to be acquired and the operational control that LDE already exercised jointly with Veolia Eau over seven of the eight companies.
Further information on this case is available at: