The South African Competition Commission and the Namibian Competition Commission have both unconditionally approved the acquisition by Lixil Group Corporation (Lixil) of sole control over Grohe Group S.à r.l. (Grohe). Prior to the proposed transaction, Lixil exercised joint control over Grohe, together with the Development Bank of Japan.
Lixil is involved in the manufacture and sale of building materials and housing equipment, while Grohe supplies water technology products for bathrooms and kitchens, in particular, sanitary fittings and behind-the-wall flushing and installations systems. In South Africa and Namibia, the firms which Grohe controls include Cobra Watertech, Isca, Libra Bathrooms, Vaal Sanitaryware, Apex Valves South Africa and Exipro Manufacturing. These firms supply a variety of bathroom and kitchen plumbing and sanitary ware products.
The South African and Namibian competition authorities considered the activities of the merger parties and found that an overlap exists as, prior to the proposed transaction, Lixil exercised joint control over Grohe. However, such overlap is unlikely to change the structure of any market due to the fact that there is no accretion in market share.