Brussels, 6 February 2013
Mergers: Commission clears acquisition of Valeo's Comfort Access Mechanisms business by Japanese auto parts manufacturer U-Shin
The European Commission has cleared under the Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of the French company Valeo SA's Comfort Access Mechanisms business ("CAM") by U-Shin Ltd. of Japan. CAM manufactures and distributes products that facilitate vehicle access and prevent unauthorised vehicle use, such as handles or locks. The Commission concluded that the proposed acquisition did not raise competition concerns because it would not significantly alter the market structure.
U-Shin is active globally in the design, development, manufacture and sale of system devices and control machines for the automotive sector, industrial machinery and home security units. CAM is a business unit of Valeo, a company active in the manufacture and distribution of automotive parts. It is part of Valeo's Comfort and Driving Assistance business group.
The merging parties' activities overlap in the sale and manufacture of several automotive components. The Commission examined the potential effects of the proposed acquisition as regards the manufacture and sale of latches, handles, locks, mechanical steering column locks, electronic steering column locks and locksets. The Commission's investigation confirmed that the proposed acquisition did not raise competition concerns because the merged entity would continue to face competition from a number of strong competitors, while its customers are mainly large sophisticated original equipment manufacturers (OEM) that make purchases through highly competitive bidding processes.
The Commission therefore concluded that the transaction would not significantly impede effective competition in the European Economic Area (EEA) or any substantial part of it.
The transaction was notified to the Commission on 21 December 2012.
Merger control rules and procedures
The Commission has the duty to assess mergers and acquisitions involving companies with a turnover above certain thresholds (see Article 1 of the Merger Regulation) and to prevent concentrations that would significantly impede effective competition in the EEA or any substantial part of it.
The vast majority of notified mergers do not pose competition problems and are cleared after a routine review. From the moment a transaction is notified, the Commission generally has a total of 25 working days to decide whether to grant approval (Phase I) or to start an in-depth investigation (Phase II).
More information on the case is available at:
Antoine Colombani (+32 2 297 45 13)
Marisa Gonzalez Iglesias (+32 2 295 19 25)