Friday, 24 June 2022

Press Release – Clearance of a proposed acquisition

Subject: Clearance of the proposed acquisition of sole control over "EUROPEAN RELIANCE GENERAL INSURANCE Co." by "ALLIANZ SE".

On June 24, 2022, the competent Chamber of the Hellenic Competition Commission unanimously approved (by its decision no. 782/2022), pursuant to Art. 8(3) of Greek Law 3959/2011, the proposed transaction concerning the acquisition of sole control by the company "ALLIANZ SE" over the company "EUROPEAN RELIANCE GENERAL INSURANCE Co" (hereinafter "EUROPEAN RELIANCE"), as this transaction, although it falls within the scope of paragraph 1 of article 6 of Law 3959 / 2011, does not raise any serious doubts as to its compatibility with competition rules in the relevant markets concerned.

The above concentration will bring about a change in the control of EUROPEAN RELIANCE, as ALLIANZ SE will acquire sole control over the target company.

The relevant geographic market in this transaction, in relation to the relevant markets of life insurance and non-life insurance services, is considered to be the Greek territory with the exception of the sixth activity sector concerning "Ship Insurance", as defined in article 4 of Law 4364/2016, where the relevant geographical market is considered to cover at least the European territory.

The concentration has, in principle, a horizontal dimension (direct life insurance and direct non-life insurance markets) as it involves undertakings that are actual or potential competitors in certain relevant markets without, however, raising serious concerns as to its compatibility with competition rules in these markets.

The concentration is not expected to bring about any vertical effects, in the sense that it will not result in the creation of a single entity which would either operate at different levels of a specific value chain or strengthen its market position while operating in upstream or downstream markets. It should be noted that the acquirer has no presence in the market for insurance agency services.

The acquired undertaking has subsidiaries active in various markets[1], the relationship of which with the markets where the acquirer is active is neither horizontal (competitors in the same relevant market) nor vertical (suppliers or customers). Considering, on the one hand, that these markets are not even closely related to those in which the acquirer operates (i.e. they are not complementary services nor do they form part of a range of services generally purchased by the same group of consumers for the same end use) and, on the other hand, the non-existence monopoly power of the parties in any of these markets, there is no need to further examine any conglomerate effects of the concentration.

[1] Markets for corporate finance, venture capital, investment banking, "facility services" in business premises (cleaning, storage, maintenance) and electricity generation / wholesale.

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