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Merger of Lyfja og heilsu hf. and Opna ehf.

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  • Case number: 28/2018
  • Date: 15/3/2019
  • Company:
    • Lyf og heilsa hf.
    • Opna ehf.
  • Sectors:
    • Specialist service and other services
  • Policy Area:
    • Mergers
  • Summary

    The Icelandic Competition Authority (-ICA) has examined the merger of Lyf og heilsa hf. and Opna ehf. Lyf og heilsa is pharmacy chain that operates pharmacies around Iceland under the names Lyf og heilsa and Apótekarinn. One of Lyf og heilsa’s pharmacies is in Mosfellsbær. Opna operates one pharmacy, Apótek MOS, which is in Mosfellsbær.

    The product and service market considered is the market for the retail sale of pharmaceuticals. ICA's investigation revealed that the services of pharmacies are local in nature, and customers do not travel far for the service. ICA therefore concluded that geographical market is Mosfellsbær. It is the opinion of ICA that the merging parties are close and important competitors in Mosfellsbær and in fact the only competitors in the municipality. Following the merger, the competitive restraint they have given each other would disappear and competition in Mosfellsbær would be significantly disorted.

    ICA concluded that the merger would create a dominant position (100 % market share) in the market for the retail sale of pharmaceuticals in Mosfellsbær. ICA also concluded barries to entry into the market are considerable and timely entry of a new competitor is unlikely. The merged entity could therefore, by virtue of its position, restrict competition.

    For the reasons set out above ICA concluded that the merger contravenes Article 17. c of the Competition Act and therefor prohibited the merger.