Rotterdam court tears up PostNL Sandd merger permit
Judges in Rotterdam have torn up the official permit given to PostNL and Sandd to merge, saying the ministers were wrong to approve the merger when they did.
‘The court is aware of the far-reaching consequences this will have and that there are questions about whether the merger can actually be undone,’ the court said in its ruling.
The government gave the green light to the takeover in September 2019, using a special clause in competition law, even though the Dutch competition authority had come out against it.
The case was brought by two small postal companies, news website Nu.nl said.
The court ruled that the permit had not been properly prepared or motivated. In addition, it said, the two companies had not had a real opportunity to respond to PostNL’s offer of access to its network within a reasonable amount of time.
PostNL controlled some 70% of the Dutch postal market and Sandd, which was founded in 1999, controlled virtually all the rest – primarily business deliveries.
It is unclear, as yet, what the legal implications of the ruling for the merged company are.
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