ACCC gives green light to Amcor’s acquisition of major food packaging group

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 28th March 2012

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) today announced that it does not propose to intervene in Australian-based multinational packaging company Amcor Limited’s proposed AU$238 million takeover of the privately-owned Aperio Group.

Amcor and Aperio are two or the leading companies in Australia’s flexible packaging market. According to the ACCC, if the acquisition were to be completed, the merged company would account for in excess of 30 per cent of Australian sales of flexible packaging.

After an extensive investigation, the ACCC formed the view that the proposed acquisition would “not result in a substantial lessening of competition in any market”.

Announcing its decision today, the ACCC said a large number of interested parties were consulted in its review of the proposed acquisition, including domestic and overseas flexible packaging manufacturers, small, medium and large customers and other industry participants.

The ACCC said it considered the likely competition effects of the proposed acquisition in the national market for value-added flexible packaging, which includes packaging for goods such as confectionery, biscuits, bread and frozen foods.

ACCC chairman Rod Sims said, “In making its decision, the ACCC considered that there will be a number of competitors to Amcor Limited, particularly overseas manufacturers of value-added flexible packaging, as the type of packaging manufactured by Amcor is generally easy to transport and import levels are increasing.

“Some overseas suppliers offer Australian warehouse and distribution services to better compete with domestic suppliers. There are also Australian suppliers looking to expand,” Mr Sims added.

The ACCC was of the opinion that if the merged Amcor / Aperio attempted to increase the price of value-added flexible packaging and/or decrease service levels, then, competitors already supplying Australian customers, along with potential suppliers located overseas, would be able to attract business and win market share away from the merged group.