The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission today announced that it will not oppose the proposed acquisition of Hudson Building Supplies Pty Limited (Hudson) by Woolworths Limited and Lowe’s Companies Inc (Joint Venture).
Hudson operates a chain of stores in New South Wales and Queensland that supply building materials, hardware, and home improvement products.
“The ACCC concluded that the proposed acquisition would not be likely to substantially lessen competition in any local market for the retail supply of building supplies, hardware and home improvement products,” ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said.
The ACCC gave close consideration to the degree of overlap between the merger parties.
The ACCC noted that the primary customer segment serviced by Hudson is builders who have materials delivered to building sites, with some overlap between Hudson and the Joint Venture’s Masters stores in the supply of products and services to smaller trade customers from their respective retail outlets.
While the ACCC found that the degree of overlap in this customer segment was limited, it nevertheless found that the Joint Venture would be likely to be competitively constrained by a number of retail competitors in each of the relevant local markets following the proposed acquisition.
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