This posting was written by Jeffrey May, Editor of CCH Trade Regulation Reporter.
The European Commission (EC) announced on November 12 that it has cleared Procter & Gamble Company's proposed acquisition of the over-the-counter (OTC) business of the generic pharmaceutical company Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, Ltd. of Israel. The OTC assets had been acquired by Teva from U.S.-based Cephalon, Inc. in 2011. The EC’s investigation focused on topical anti-rheumatics and analgesics, and expectorants, sold in Latvia, Lithuania, and Estonia.
The EC concluded that the current transaction would not raise competition concerns because it would not significantly alter the market structure. According to the EC, the affected market was last examined in October 2011, when Teva acquired Cephalon's then-existing OTC business. The competitive conditions in these markets have not materially changed since then.
In September 2011, the EC cleared Procter & Gamble’s acquisition of “important parts” of Teva’s OTC business, after concluding that the proposed transaction would not raise competition concerns. In its investigation of that transaction, the EC focused on laxatives sold in the Netherlands and antitussives sold in Austria.
Procter & Gamble and Teva had issued a statement in November 2011, announcing plans to create a new partnership and joint venture in consumer health care. The parties said that the venture, PGT Healthcare, was to be headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, and operate in essentially all markets outside of North America. The partnership between Procter & Gamble and Teva also was to develop new brands for the North American market.