OFT Green Light 2Sisters Vion Buyout
The Office of Fair Trading OFT has given the green light to food giant 2 Sisters purchase of the poultry and red meat processing businesses of Vion in the UK.
The acquisition was agreed in March 2013 and involved the transfer of 11 processing sites and about 6,000 employees. 2 Sisters said the move secured “a viable future” for the business.
But the OFT opted to assess whether the agreement resulted in the creation of “a relevant merger situation” under the merger provisions of the Enterprise Act 2002.If the deal was found to have resulted in a substantial lessening of competition in the poultry meat products sector, it could have been referred to the Competition Commission for further investigation. However, the OFT has cleared the deal.
Speaking at the time of the sale, 2 Sisters chief executive Ranjit Singh said: “This acquisition will safeguard a key supply chain for high-quality British poultry and meat, offering reassurance to farmers in England, Scotland and Wales and upholding the quality and provenance that UK customers and consumers deserve.”
Private equity firm Endless backed a management buyout of Vions UK pork operation in December 2012. It included a base in Stoke-on-Trent and safeguarded about 4,000 jobs across the UK.The deals came after Vion last year revealed it was ceasing its involvement in the UK.