EU regulators suspend Luxottica, Essilor probe, await data

 EU antitrust regulators have suspended an investigation into the $54 billion (£41.2 billion) merger between French glasses group Essilor and Italy's Luxottica after the companies failed to provide requested data.


Luxottica


The deal has sparked regulatory concerns that it may lead to price rises or mean retailers are forced to buy both lens and eyewear from the merged company.

The European Commission, which opened a full-scale investigation into the case on Sept. 26, said it stopped the clock on Oct. 25.

"This procedure in merger investigations is activated if the parties fail to provide, in a timely fashion, an important piece of information that the Commission has requested from them," the EU competition authority said in an email.

"Once the missing information is supplied by the parties, the clock is re-started and the deadline for the Commission's decision is then adjusted accordingly."

Sources close to the two companies told Reuters Essilor and Luxottica were working to resolve the situation in the short term.

The sources added they were confident that the temporary suspension would not have a material impact on the timing of the whole regulatory process.

Australia's competition agency cleared the deal last month, saying it did not see any issues. U.S. regulators are also examining the merger.

Luxottica's brands include Ray Ban and Persol, and licensed names such as Chanel and Armani.
 

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