Brussels Partner Matthew Hall Offers Perspective on Reckitt Benckiser Acquisition

August 24, 2015

McGuireWoods Brussels partner Matthew Hall is quoted by Global Competition Review on a UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) decision to approve Reckitt Benckiser Group’s purchase of Johnson & Johnson’s K-Y personal lubricant brand. Published August 13 and titled “CMA applies remedy to smooth Reckitt/K-Y deal,” the piece focuses on the CMA’s decision, as well as the remedy put in place to ensure that competitors are given time enough to develop rival brands and access national retail and pharmacy chains following the deal’s closing.

“This was a worldwide acquisition with no assets dedicated to the UK, so divestiture as a remedy would have been disproportionate,” says Hall in quoted material. “Licensing for a fixed period is common in similar consumer goods cases, allowing the licensee time to establish its brand.”

The deal, which will license the K-Y business to a third party for eight years, aims to protect consumers against inevitably higher retail prices resulting from the acquisition.

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