Germany Updates Its Merger Control Regime

9 June 2017
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Key takeaways

  • In an Amendment effective today, June 9, 2017, Germany amended its competition rules, including its merger control regime by introducing a transaction value and significant activity test. This test expands—not replaces the preexisting rules.
  • The German Federal Cartel Office ("FCO") will likely accept any method to calculate the transaction value as long as that method is based on recognized valuation practices. However, the criterion “significant activity” is quite vague and must be assessed on a case-by-case basis. Further FCO guidance is expected.
  • The Amendment is a reaction to the realities of the digital economy in which research-, innovation- and data-driven companies can be highly valued despite generating low turnover. It is, however, unlikely to affect the vast majority of transactions in Germany, which will continue to be covered by the established merger control rules.