The scale of the potential merger between can-making giants Rexam and Ball could lead to problems with competition regulators.
US giant Ball is only slightly larger than FTSE 250 firm Rexam, and comprise the two largest businesses in the sector globally.
The proposed £4.3bn buyout could make sense in extending Ball’s reach globally.
Rexam is strong in Russia, Scandinavia and the Middle East, while Ball has a major presence in China and Vietnam.
As a result the pair could gain new markets together and make efficiency savings.
However, they both overlap in Europe and North America – countries with active competition authorities.
Other large-scale global mergers which have come under scrutiny recently include household goods giant Reckitt Benckiser. The Competition and Markets Authority in the UK is investigating the Durex-owner’s acquisition of the manufacturer of the KY brand of body lubricants. The EU is investigating Zimmer’s planned acquisition of fellow orthopaedic firm Biomet.
And US investigators are looking into Dollar General Corporation and Dollar Tree’s competing bids to buy rival Family Dollar Stores.
BEHIND THE DEAL
BARCLAYS | RICHARD TAYLOR
1 Richard Taylor is Barclays’ co-head of banking, responsible for the investment bank’s global corporate finance and strategic advisory units. In this case, he is working for Rexam as it faces a takeover bid from rival Ball.
2 Taylor’s career has spanned a series of increasingly impressive roles at HSBC, where he rose to become head of M&A execution, then at Bank of America Merrill Lynch to become Head of UK and Ireland Corporate and Investment Banking.
3 When not working on giant corporate deals, Taylor is involved in the Speakers for Schools scheme. The aim is to connect state schools with inspirational figures from across British society and industry.