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Authorities request more information on Essilor-Luxottica merger

26/07/2017By Matthew Woodley
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The United States Federal Trade Commission, in combination with the Antitrust Division of the US Justice Department, have requested additional information and documents relating to the proposed merger between Essilor and Luxottica.

The discovery procedure, also known as a ‘secondary request’, is made when either of the two government bodies has reason to believe a proposed merger will impede competition within the market. Typically, this process involves gathering information about the sales, facilities, assets, and structure of the businesses that are party to the transaction.

However, despite the request, Essilor and Luxottica are still aiming to close the antitrust process – a precondition for the two companies’ merger in five separate jurisdictions – by the end of 2017. In addition to the US, paperwork has been lodged in Brazil and Canada, with Canadian authorities also making a secondary request.

The process is still in the pre-notification phase in Europe, however, continued dialogue has the two companies hopeful that they will be able to formally notify the transaction in the coming weeks. Meanwhile, the deal is under review in China by its Ministry of Commerce, the outcome of which is expected in the near future.

The update on the merger process comes as Luxottica Group announced a 4.2% net sales increase for the first half of 2017. The €4.9 billion (AU$7.2 b) in sales has seen its first-half underlying operating profit come in just ahead of forecasts and means the Italian eyewear group is on track to meet full-year targets.

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