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PMP cleared to buy APN Print assets

Thursday 16th December 2010

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The Commerce Commission has given clearance to PMP Print to acquire heat set printing assets of APN Print.

In October APN said PMP would become its exclusive provider of gloss printing services under a 10-year contract in New Zealand, and APN's Manukau plant would close with about 150 staff affected.

The commission's decision today said APN had closed the Manukau heat set printing division after a period of sustained losses.

APN was unable to dispose of the division as a going concern and, other than PMP 2010, no party was interested in the printing assets, the commission said.

"So the only alternative to PMP's acquisition was the exit of APN's heat set printing assets from the market."

It was the first time the commission had considered a "failing firm" argument since releasing guidelines in October 2009.

Commission chairman Mark Berry said the commission was satisfied there was no real prospect of an acquirer of the business as a going concern if the proposed acquisition did not go ahead.

It was also satisfied there was no real prospect of a third party acquiring the assets on closure of the business and using the assets to compete in the relevant market.



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