The Commission cleared under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of the Swiss company Financière Ermewa (“Ermewa”) by Transport et Logistique Partenaires SA (“TLP”) owned by the French SNCF.

It emerged from the Commission's initial market investigation that the planned transaction was likely to raise competition concerns on markets linked to the transportation of cereals by rail, in particular the axial hopper wagon hire market, and on the cereal rail transport commissioning market in France, Benelux, Italy and part of Germany where such wagons are used. The planned transaction would have had the effect of bringing together the two main operators in this field, leading to the creation of an unavoidable partner for cereal shippers in the area in question.

To address the Commission's concerns, TLP offered to divest all commissioning activities for the transportation of cereals by rail plus a fleet of cereal hopper wagons. After market testing the proposed remedies, the Commission concluded that they would address the competition concerns initially identified in its market investigation. The Commission therefore concluded that the planned transaction, as modified by the commitments, would not raise any competition concerns.

IP/10/44 – 22 January 2010