Cleaning chemicals companies’ merger probed

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The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has been investigating Ecolab’s acquisition of Holchem.

The companies make and supply cleaning chemicals for businesses that manufacture food, drink and dairy products. Access to competitively-priced, safe and effective cleaning products and services is an important part of the supply of food and drink within the UK.

Following its Phase 1 investigation, the CMA has identified concerns that the acquisition could adversely affect these businesses as a result of higher prices or lower quality services. This is because Ecolab and Holchem are two of the largest suppliers of cleaning chemicals and would face limited competition from other suppliers after the merger.

Ecolab now has until 17 April to offer a solution to the CMA’s concerns. Otherwise, the merger will be referred for an in-depth Phase 2 investigation, to be carried out by a group of independent CMA panel members.

Further information can be found on the Ecolab/Holchem case page.

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