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EU Clears Volkswagen Acquisition of MAN

Merger will create Europe's top truck maker and number two bus manufacturer.

The EU's executive Commission on Sept. 26 approved Volkswagen's acquisition of truck maker MAN, which Europe's biggest automaker eventually plans to merge with Scania.

"The Commission concluded that the proposed transaction would not significantly impede effective competition... because the merged entity would continue to face strong competition from other well established manufacturers," it said.

Volkswagen announced plans in May to towards a merger of German MAN and Scania of Sweden, in which it already owned considerable stakes, to create Europe's top truck maker and number two bus manufacturer.

It noted anti-trust restrictions have posed hurdles for a tie-up of heavy vehicle activities from all three brands, however.

"To enable a more in-depth cooperation among MAN, Scania and Volkswagen, merger control clearance and further increase of Volkswagens holding in MAN are required," Volkswagen said at the time.

Volkswagen raised its stake in MAN to above 30%, obliging it to make a mandatory share offer and seek anti-trust approval.

VW owns 45.7% of the shares in Scania, along with 71 % of the voting rights. MAN owns another 13.4% of Scania's stock.

Volkswagen said in August when requesting the European Commission's approval for the takeover that closer cooperation between Volkswagen, MAN and Scania would allow it realize significant synergies and savings in purchases, development and production.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2011

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