Panasonic-Sanyo Combine Delayed for US Anti-Trust Evaluation

The U.S. Department of Justice requires submission of documents before a large-scale merger or before a company turns into a subsidiary.

Published: 30-Jan-2009

OSAKA -- Panasonic Corp. will likely delay turning Sanyo Electric Co. into its subsidiary until around this summer due to the time-consuming process under U.S. antitrust laws to evaluate the two firms' world-class lithium ion battery businesses, sources familiar with the matter said Thursday.
Panasonic initially planned to complete a tender offer for Sanyo shares by the end of March in a move that will create Japan's largest electrical machinery maker in terms of sales, the sources said.

With both companies facing deteriorating business conditions amid the global economic slowdown, observers warned of adverse impacts on their management strategies from the screening delay.

The U.S. Department of Justice requires submission of documents before a large-scale merger or before a company turns into a subsidiary to study the impact on markets, but the screening process for Panasonic and Sanyo could drag on until May or even August, they said.

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