EC approves acquisition of Rofin-Sinar by Coherent subject to sale of low-power CO2 laser business

On October 26, the European Commission issued an official press release.

On October 26, the European Commission (EC) issued the following press release regarding the proposal by Coherent to acquire Rofin-Sinar:

Rofin-Sinar and Coherent are both global suppliers of lasers with broad product portfolios and global sales and service capabilities. The Commission had concerns that the proposed transaction, as initially notified, would lead to high combined market shares in low power CO2 lasers (<1 kW). The commitments offered by the parties address these concerns.

The Commission’s competition concerns:

The Commission’s preliminary investigation showed that the proposed transaction would combine the two largest suppliers of low power CO2 lasers. With a market share above 50% in this sector, the combined Rofin-Sinar and Coherent would have been the clear market leader.

The investigation regarding low power CO2 lasers showed that:

- Rofin-Sinar and Coherent had been competing closely before the transaction;

- the remaining considerably smaller alternative suppliers, including Asian manufacturers, would have been unable to maintain sufficient competition to avoid price increases and reduced product choice;

- other laser and non-laser technologies were not exercising sufficient competitive constraint on this market.

Moreover, numerous customers raised concerns about the risk of potential price increases, reduction of choice and deterioration of service in low power CO2 lasers following the transaction.

No competition concerns were identified in any of the other markets where the activities of Rofin-Sinar and Coherent overlap due to the presence of strong alternative suppliers.

The proposed commitments:

To address the Commission’s competition concenrs, Coherent offered to sell Rofin-Sinar’s Hull (UK) business manufacturing low power CO2 lasers. The divestment entirely removes the overlap between the activities of the two companies in low power CO2 lasers at the global level. It fully addresses the identified competition concerns.

Therefore, the Commission concluded that the transaction, as modified by the commitments, would raise no competition concerns. The Commission’s approval is conditional upon full compliance with the commitments.

More information on the case is available on the Commission’s competition website, in the public case register under the case number M.8055.

Source: European Commission

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