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EC Green Light for Refresco Acquisition of Gerber Emig

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EC Green Light for Refresco Acquisition of Gerber Emig

EC Green Light for Refresco Acquisition of Gerber Emig
October 08
11:55 2013

The European Competition Commission has conditionally cleared the proposed acquisition of fruit juice bottler Gerber Emig of the UK by Dutch rival Refresco to create a leading pan-European bottler of soft drinks and fruit juices to serve retail and branded customers. The clearance is conditional upon the divestment of one of Gerber Emig’s production and bottling plant at Waibstadt in Germany.

The two groups are both active in the production and bottling of non-carbonated soft drinks (NCSDs) to retailers and in contract manufacturing branded NCSDs for brand owners in a number of European Economic Area (EEA) Member States. The Commission’s concerns related to private label bottling in France, Germany and Belgium.

The plant at Waibstadt has the ability to bottle aseptic PET in sufficient volumes to impose a competitive constraint on the parties in the areas of concern. Moreover, Waibstadt is already currently used by Gerber Emig to deliver aseptic PET products to France, Belgium and Germany. The commitments offered by Refresco address these concerns.

The combination of Refresco and Gerber Emig will create a business with production sites in nine countries, pro forma annual revenues of Eur2.3 billion and EBITDA of almost Eur160 million. The merger is highly complementary for both businesses.

Refresco is the larger of the two companies. This is reflected in the ownership of the merged entity with Refresco shareholders taking 70% of the equity and Gerber Emig shareholders a 30% stake.

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