Merger Control

On the basis of European rules on merger control, planned mergers, acquisitions and certain types of joint ventures in which the companies concerned exceed predetermined turnover thresholds are subject to prior supervision by the European Commission. If turnover generated by the affected companies does not exceed these thresholds, the transactions may still be subject to supervision by one or more national authorities, such as the Authority for Consumers & Markets (ACM). If a “care provider” is involved in the merger or acquisition, an obligation to notify the transaction to the Dutch Healthcare Authority (NZa) may exist.

It is strictly prohibited to undertake a transaction subject to merger supervision before approval has been awarded by the competent supervising body(ies). Enterprises that fail to comply with the merger rules risk high penalties and can be ordered to (partially) reverse the transaction.

Is your organisation involved in a transaction that will bring about a change in control over the business? Given the far-reaching potential consequences, it is essential to consider competition law at the earliest possible stage. Be aware: also the outsourcing of a department can under certain circumstances qualify as a merger subject to mandatory notification.

The information issued in the framework of a merger notification must be both complete and correct. If the information submitted is incomplete, the supervisory body may decide to refuse to consider the notification, or require that any missing information is supplemented. In such a situation, the term set aside for taking a decision (4 weeks if it concerns a notification at the ACM) is suspended, and the intended transaction is delayed. As well as the loss of time, providing incorrect or incomplete information can under certain circumstances lead to potentially high administrative fines. Our specialists have considerable experience in advising and counselling businesses in notifying transactions to the European Commission, ,the ACM and the NZa. If you call upon our service on time, we can prevent you from being confronted with unpleasant surprises.