The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has accepted a divestiture proposal offered by Johnson & Johnson and will not oppose J&J's proposed acquisition of the consumer healthcare business of Pfizer inc.
"J&J and Pfizer have each provided court enforceable undertakings to allay the ACCC's competition concerns about the impact of J&J's proposed acquisition in the worm treatments, anti-diarrhoeal and nicotine replacement therapy product categories", ACCC Chairman, Mr Graeme Samuel, said today.
"J&J's undertaking requires J&J to divest its Vermox brand in the worm treatments product category, and Pfizer's anti-diarrhoeals brands Lomotil and Lofenoxal", Mr Samuel said.
"In addition, the undertakings provided by J&J and Pfizer provide that, if required, J&J and/or Pfizer will assist the proposed purchaser/s of these divested brands to secure a source of supply of the products corresponding with these brands on competitive terms for a period of two to three years after their sale.
"J&J's undertaking also requires it to divest part or all of its global nicotine replacement therapy business including, if required, the manufacturing assets of this business", Mr Samuel said. To achieve this divestiture, J&J has undertaken to comply with its divestiture commitments to the European Commission, and to obtain ACCC approval for any proposed purchaser of the business.
"The ACCC conducted market inquiries about the impact of the proposed acquisition and J&J's divestiture proposal on competition in the supply of worm treatments, anti-diarrhoeals and nicotine replacement therapy products in Australia. It has decided that, subject to the divestitures, the proposed acquisition will not lead to a substantial lessening of competition in any of the relevant product categories".
The J&J and Pfizer undertakings will appear on the ACCC's website public register shortly. A Public Competition Assessment will be published in due course.
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