FTC Aims to Block Consolidation in the Cement Industry

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  • The Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) filed an administrative grievance and approved a swimsuit in federal courtroom to dam the acquisition of cement producer Keystone Cement Firm (“Keystone”) by rival cement producer Lehigh Cement Firm LLC (“Lehigh”) over allegations that the deal would hurt regional competitors in cement, a key ingredient for concrete manufacturing, in violation of the FTC Act and the Clayton Act.
  • The complaint alleges that the proposed acquisition would hurt competitors out there for grey portland cement in jap Pennsylvania and western New Jersey as a result of it will scale back the variety of opponents from 4 to 3, ensuing within the post-acquisition firm controlling greater than 50% of cement gross sales, and in addition that the acquisition would improve the chance of anticompetitive coordination within the regional market. The grievance additional alleges that Keystone and Lehigh are shut opponents who engaged in value wars that lowered cement costs for his or her clients, however that the mixed firm could be ready to boost costs or scale back output and high quality.
  • The grievance’s discover of contemplated reduction, within the occasion that the acquisition is consummated, contains divestiture or reconstitution of belongings in a way that restores two or extra impartial companies within the related market, amongst different issues.
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