Demerger of Ahlstrom’s Label & Processing business unit in Europe postponed from the first to second quarter 2013.
Ahlstrom and Munksjö have received a statement of objections from the European Commission related to the proposed combination of Ahlstrom Label & Processing and Munksjö. According to Ahlstrom, the document issued by the EU antitrust authorities addresses the competitive effects of the proposed combination with respect to abrasive backings and pre-impregnated decor papers.
As a result, the demerger of Ahlstrom’s Label and Processing in Europe, previously targeted for the first quarter of the year, would be postponed and was now expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2013, Ahlstrom stated in a press release on 22. February. The demerger process of Ahlstrom’s Label and Processing in Brazil business was not affected and was still scheduled for completion in the second quarter 2013, Ahlstrom said.
In December last year, the EC opened an in-depth probe in the Ahlstrom/Munksjö deal over competition concerns in the markets for pre-impregnated decor paper and abrasive backing paper. The preliminary investigation by antitrust authorities in the merger of Ahlstrom’s Label and Processing business unit and Munksjö had indicated that the transaction would combine two leading suppliers in a an already concentrated market, leading to a reduction of choice for customers and to a potential increase in prices.
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