Welcome to the September 2019 (first edition) of our Competition Law Newsletter. This will be a quarterly update covering key developments in EU and UK competition law.
High fines imposed on companies for "gun jumping"
On 27 June 2019, the European Commission ("EC") fined Canon, the Japanese manufacturer of imaging and optical products, 28 million for implementing its acquisition of Toshiba Medical Systems Corporation ("TMSC") before notifying and obtaining the approval of the EC. This was a breach by Canon of the "stand-still" obligation under the EU Merger Control Regulation ("EUMR").
When a merger, or an acquisition, or the creation of a joint venture amounts to a "concentration" (i.e. as a result of the change of control in one, or more undertakings, etc.) under the EUMR, the parties to the transaction need to consider whether a formal notification of their transaction to the EC is required (i.e. if the relevant EUMR turnover thresholds are met). If a notification is required, the parties should hold off (i.e. "stand-still") from completing their transaction, until the EC's approval is granted.