EU Approves Franco-German Aventis Merger With Conditions

BRUSSELS: The European Union commission announced Aug. 10 its conditional approval for the proposed merger of pharmaceuticals companies Rhone-Poulenc of France and Hoechst of Germany to create Aventis, one of the largest life-sciences groups in the world. In a written statement, the commission said that the companies made commitments that will eliminate any competition concerns the deal may have posed. According to the commission, Aventis will become the second largest pharmaceuticals company in terms of worldwide turnover, closely followed by Glaxo Wellcome, AstraZeneca, Pfizer, Bristol-Myers Squibb, and Novartis. In the plant protection sector Aventis will be the world leader in terms of turnover, ahead of Novartis by a narrow margin, the Commission said.

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