KONKURENCIJOS TARYBA CLEARS ACQUISITION OF CLASSIFIED ADS WEBSITES‘ OWNER
Konkurencijos taryba cleared the acquisition of 100 per cent and sole control of the Estonian company Baltic Classifieds Group indirectly through Antler Bidco and Antler HoldCo, the latter registered in Luxembourg, by the London-based firm Apax Partners.
On 7 June 2019 Konkurencijos taryba received merger notification. No objections from the interested parties were received during the merger examination procedure. Having evaluated the circumstances related to the transaction, the authority acknowledged that the intended merger would not create or strengthen the dominant position, or significantly restrict competition in the relevant markets.
Apax Partners is a limited liability partnership and holding of undertakings providing investment advisory services to private equity funds. Funds advised by Apax Partners own controlling interest in other companies which act in different sectors of Lithuania, including the trade of tools used in observing the offenders, non-surgical aesthetic and respiratory devices, sports betting software and data, hotel bookings for travel agents and business trip managers, clothing, as well as provide IT services. The aforementioned funds indirectly own a holding company Antler HoldCo which controls Antler Bidco.
Baltic Classifieds Group owns online classified ads websites in the Baltic states. In Lithuania the company Diginet LTU owns the ads websites of general use products (www.skelbiu.lt), real estate (www.aruodas.lt), job offers (www.cvbankas.lt), cars (www.autoplius.lt), as well as the platform of general services which enables its users to publish ads relating to the services of handicraftsman, various specialists, small companies, employee and student services and their products (www.paslaugos.lt); price comparison platform (www.kainos.lt).
In Estonia companies AllePal and Kinnisvaraportaal own the websites of general use products and real estate ads, while in Latvia – real estate ads website City24.
The intended merger must be notified to Konkurencijos taryba and clearance must be obtained if the combined aggregate income of merging parties in the business year preceding the merger exceeds EUR 20 million and the aggregate income of each of at least two merging parties in the business year preceding the merger exceeds EUR 2 million.