- Ports Pty Ltd
SummaryAsciano proposed to acquire an additional 20% equity interest in Ports Pty Ltd (Ports), as trustee for the Port of Geelong Unit Trust (PoGUT), being the owner of the Port of Geelong.
GeelongPort Pty Ltd (GeelongPort), a wholly owned subsidiary of Asciano, operates the Port of Geelong pursuant to a long term operating agreement with Ports.
Market definitionThe ACCC considered the proposed acquisition in the context of the following relevant markets:
- The market or markets for the provision of general and bulk stevedoring and related services at the Port of Geelong; and
- The market for the operation of the Port of Geelong.
However it was not necessary to form a definitive view regarding market definition as the proposed acquisition was unlikely to raise concerns regardless of the market definition applied.
Competition analysisThe ACCC formed the view that the proposed acquisition was unlikely to result in a substantial lessening of competition in any relevant market. Factors informing this conclusion included:
- The proposed acquisition would be unlikely to change Asciano's ability or incentive to use its equity interest in Ports/PoGUT to foreclose competing operators of the Port of Geelong (who may seek to win the right to operate the Port when Geelong Port's operating agreement terminates).
- The proposed acquisition would be unlikely to increase Geelong Port's ability and incentive to foreclose downstream competitors at the Port of Geelong. Post-acquisition, GeelongPort will continue to be subject to a section 87B undertaking that was accepted by the ACCC on 21 July 1999. Among other things, the undertaking imposes non-discrimination obligations on GeelongPort with respect to providing third parties with access to the Port.
|12/12/2011||ACCC commenced review under the Merger Review Process Guidelines.|
|04/01/2012||Closing date for submissions from interested parties.|
|27/01/2012||ACCC announced it would not oppose the proposed acquisition.|