On 3rd August, the Hellenic Competition Commission’s (HCC), plenary session unanimously approved the merger proposed between ANEK Lines with ATTICA Holdings.
HCC decided that the merger, which involves the provision of maritime transport services for passengers, cars and trucks in the Greek territory and in port pairs (origin-destination) in Crete and the Adriatic, as well as providing maritime transport services through public service contracts, does not raise serious doubts as to its compatibility with the requirements for the functioning of competition in the relevant markets.
In particular, the HCC concluded that, although the merger may significantly restrict the operation of competition, in particular by creating or strengthening a dominant position, in the markets, the three conditions are fulfilled.
The Competition Commission concluded that a) ANEK would be forced to exit the market in the near future, due to its financial difficulties, b) that there was no other alternative acquisition option, less harmful to competition, other than that notified, and c) that there was no credible interest in acquiring the assets of ANEK and therefore these would exit the market.
On balance and the overall make-up of the affected markets, the competitive structure will not be worse off, as a result of the merger than it would be in case of a non liquidation of the company’s assets, and is therefore not causally related to it, the Commission said.