European Commission to Review Qualcomm’s Acquisition of Autotalks and Approves Acquisition of BPS by Advent and Warburg Pincus

The European Commission has taken significant steps in the realm of mergers, accepting requests for assessment and granting approval for two distinct acquisitions. These decisions mark important developments in the European Union’s regulatory landscape.

Assessment of Qualcomm’s Acquisition of Autotalks

The European Commission has granted consent to evaluate the proposed acquisition of Autotalks by Qualcomm, following submissions from 15 EU Member States. Qualcomm, a global semiconductor manufacturer based in the United States, has been making waves in various industries, particularly the automotive sector, where its innovative chipsets enable direct communication between vehicles and their surroundings, known as vehicles-to-everything (V2X) communications. Autotalks, an Israeli semiconductor specialist, focuses on V2X semiconductors.

The referral requests to the Commission emerged after Member States were invited to participate. Notably, Belgium, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, and Sweden submitted initial referrals, invoking Article 22(1) of the EU Merger Regulation (EUMR). This provision enables Member States to seek Commission assessment for mergers that do not inherently possess an EU dimension but have implications for trade within the single market, posing potential competition concerns. Later, Czechia, Denmark, Finland, Ireland, Luxembourg, Portugal, Romania, and Slovakia joined these referral requests, collectively representing the European Economic Area (EEA).

Based on available information, the Commission believes that the proposed transaction meets the criteria for referral under Article 22 of the EUMR. The merger involves key suppliers of V2X semiconductors within the EEA, pivotal technology for enhancing road safety, traffic management, and environmental preservation. Ensuring accessibility to V2X technology for stakeholders like original equipment manufacturers and infrastructure managers remains a central concern. The Commission has instructed Qualcomm to formally notify the transaction, which cannot proceed without Commission clearance. This occurrence marks the second instance of Article 22(1) referral acceptance, aligning with the Article 22 Guidance introduced on March 26, 2021.

For more information: Arianna Podesta – Tel.: +32 2 298 70 24 Sara Simonini – Tel.: +32 2 298 33 67

Clearance for Advent and Warburg Pincus’ Acquisition of BPS

Simultaneously, the European Commission has approved the joint control acquisition of Baxter Pharmaceutical Solutions LLC (BPS) by Advent International Corporation and affiliated funds (Advent), as well as Warburg Pincus LLC and affiliated funds (Warburg Pincus). BPS, encompassing Baxter Pharmaceutical Solutions and Baxter Oncology, specializes in providing contract development and manufacturing organization services for finished dose pharmaceuticals.

Advent, a private equity investor with a versatile portfolio, concentrates on acquiring equity stakes and managing investment funds in diverse sectors, including healthcare. Warburg Pincus, a global private equity firm, is active across various industries, including healthcare.

Following thorough analysis, the Commission determined that this acquisition is not expected to raise competition concerns. The entities’ combined market position and vertical relationships resulting from the proposed transaction are deemed to be limited. The examination of this merger was conducted under the simplified merger review procedure.