8 May 2006
Sauce deal cleared
The UK Competition Commission has cleared the acquisition of HP Foods by Heinz. The acquisition increased already substantial market shares in several distinct food markets – notably those for a number of different sauce types (ketchup, brown sauce, and barbecue sauce), for baked beans, and for tinned pasta. However, after and in-depth investigation, the CC concluded that it did not expect that prices would increase as a result of the merger, or that equivalent reductions in service levels or quality would arise.RBB advised Heinz during the Competition Commission investigation, working closely with Malcolm Nicholson and Bertrand Louveaux of Slaughter and May and Michael Bryceland of Clifford Chance.