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Commission approves takeover of Marion Merrel Dow by Hoechst

The Commission approved on 23 June 1995 Hoechst AG's intention to buy 72% of the shares of Marion Merrel Dow Inc. (MMD) from The Dow Chemical Company. At a later time, Hoechst intends to buy the remaining 28% which are in dispersed ownership. Both companies are active in the ...

The Commission approved on 23 June 1995 Hoechst AG's intention to buy 72% of the shares of Marion Merrel Dow Inc. (MMD) from The Dow Chemical Company. At a later time, Hoechst intends to buy the remaining 28% which are in dispersed ownership. Both companies are active in the pharmaceutical industry. Hoechst is mainly strong on the European markets, while the centre of MMD's activities are the USA. The acquisition of MMD will make Hoechst one of the world's three biggest pharmaceutical companies with a world market share of around 4% and a pharmaceutical turnover of around ECU 8 billion. On some national pharmaceutical markets, the takeover of MMD by Hoechst will create a significant addition of market shares. A closer examination has shown, however, that they do not raise major concerns under the Merger Regulation. In most cases, patents have already run out. In addition, both companies are subject to competitive pressure exerted by other large international companies in most of the markets where they are present. In the area of research and development, the research areas of both firms overlap in the broadly defined areas "central nervous system" and "cardiovascular system". These areas comprise a number of diseases and therapeutic indications. A closer inspection of research activities for certain indications has revealed no overlap that would create competitive concerns.

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