Title: The Lafarge-Holcim merger negotiations

Authors: Eva-Maria Knittel; Juan David Berdugo; Kamontip Cheevavichawalkul; Marya Imbach

Addresses: Isengrundstrasse 14, 8134 Adliswil, Switzerland ' UBS AG, Bahnhofstrasse 45, 8001 Zurich, Switzerland ' FHNW School of Business, Riggenbachstrasse 16, 4600 Olten, Switzerland ' UBS AG, Bahnhofstrasse 45, 8001 Zurich, Switzerland

Abstract: The Holcim and Lafarge merger case is significant as two globally-leading cement producers obtained early-stage regulatory approval from the European Commission due to a comprehensive large-scale set of pre-emptive remedies. This case shows that it is possible to achieve early-stage regulatory approval even for transactions of enormous scale if the merger parties address all competition concerns up-front through a credible, clear-cut and all-embracing package of remedies. Lafarge and Holcim faced a rapidly changing global cement market characterised by overcapacity in industry and overcame the problem of unprofitable investments by creating a powerful position for the merged company within the industry. The two private sector protagonists were able to build process trust and a common approach to the task enabling the merger to proceed.

Keywords: Holcim; Lafarge; European Commission; regulatory approval; divestment; merger; negotiation; trust.

DOI: 10.1504/EJIM.2019.10023047

European Journal of International Management, 2019 Vol.13 No.5, pp.612 - 636

Received: 21 May 2018
Accepted: 22 May 2018

Published online: 03 Sep 2019 *

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