The European Commission has cleared under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of Abbott Laboratories' Non-U.S. Developed Markets Specialty and Branded Generics Business ("Abbott EPD-DM"), by Mylan, Inc ("Mylan"). Abbott EPD-DM is a Swiss-based manufacturer focused on distributing branded ex-originator products with expired patents and with internal production capabilities in Europe, Canada and Japan. Mylan is a US-based producer of generic pharmaceuticals. The decision is conditional upon the divestment of a number of Mylan's businesses in Germany, the United Kingdom, France, Ireland and Italy. The Commission had concerns that the transaction, as initially notified, would have reduced competition on the market for several medicines. The commitments offered by Mylan address these concerns.
The Commission examined the effects of the proposed transaction on competition in particular in five therapeutic areas, namely cardio-metabolic, gastro, anti-infective / respiratory, central nervous system / pain and women's and men's health.
The Commission's investigation found that for the majority of the products no competition concerns arise. However, for five products in certain geographic areas the Commission's market investigation identified concerns, in particular, because of the lack of substitutable products, high combined market shares of the Parties on narrow markets, few competitors present and low likelihood of entry. The markets where the Commission identified potential competition concerns are those for mebeverine in Germany and in the United Kingdom, pygeum africanum in France, betahistine in Ireland, and delorazepam in Italy.
To address these concerns, Mylan offered to divest its local businesses in the concerned markets, including the relevant marketing authorizations, customer information and supply contracts.
This commitments package will remove the competition concerns identified by the Commission.
The Commission therefore concluded that, in light of the proposed commitments, the transaction would no longer raise competition concerns. This decision is conditional upon full compliance with the commitments.
The transaction was notified to the Commission on 18 November 2014.
Companies and products
Mylan is a publicly listed US company, active in the development of medical technology and the provision of products and services treating a variety of conditions, including cardiac and vascular diseases, diabetes, and neurological and musculoskeletal conditions.
Abbott EPD-DM manufactures, licenses, markets and distributes proprietary pharmaceuticals products as well as branded generics. Abbott EPD-DM's business includes over 2 000 sales representatives in 41 countries.
Merger control rules and procedures
The Commission has the duty to assess mergers and acquisitions involvingcompanies 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).