US: Ardagh Group moves closer to Saint Gobain unit buy
Ardagh expects to close its acquisition of fellow glass bottle maker Saint Gobain's US unit, Verallia, by the middle of January, but still faces legal proceedings over the deal.
In a statement released on Friday (8 November), Luxembourg-headquartered Ardagh said it is continuing to negotiate with the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) over anti-trust concerns. The FTC lodged an initial complaint in July.
In September, Ardagh said it will sell four of its US plants, while in last week's statement the company said it will now "amend" the package of plants it is selling, without providing further details.
A lawsuit filed by the FTC over the deal has been put on hold, Ardagh said. However, parallel “administrative” proceedings are going ahead, with a trial set for 19 December, the company said.
“Ardagh plans to conclude the settlement process with the FTC and close the acquisition of VNA (Verallia North America) before mid-January 2014”, the group said in its statement.
Ardagh, whose customers include Anheuser-Busch InBev and Coca-Cola, is currently the third largest bottle producer in the US, behind France's Saint-Gobain and Owens-Illinois.
Ardagh is reportedly set to pay $1.7bn (€1.2bn) for Saint Gobain's Verallia unit.
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