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NZ Diagnostic Group, Sonic Healthcare application

Media Release


Issued June 21 2004-05/141

New Zealand Diagnostic Group and Sonic Healthcare apply to the Commission for clearance

The Commerce Commission has received an application from New Zealand Diagnostic Group Limited and Sonic Healthcare (New Zealand) Limited seeking clearance for a proposed merger of NZDG and Sonic diagnostic laboratory (pathology) services businesses in six District Health Board (DHB) districts.

The relevant DHB districts are Hawke’s Bay, Canterbury, South Canterbury, West Coast, Otago and Southland.

It is proposed three new companies would be formed, each of which would acquire the businesses of NZDG and Sonic in the relevant regions.

NZDG is a privately owned group of companies providing pathology services throughout New Zealand.

Sonic is a subsidiary of medical diagnostics company Sonic Healthcare Limited, providing pathology and radiology services to medical practitioners, hospitals, community medical services and their patients. Sonic Healthcare Limited is listed on the Australian Stock Exchange.

The merger would result in aggregation in the provision of diagnostic laboratory services in three geographic regions: the Hawke’s Bay DHB district, the Canterbury DHB district and the region comprising the Otago & Southland DHB districts.

In considering the application, the Commission’s role is to determine whether the proposed merger has the effect of substantially lessening competition in a New Zealand market.

A public version of the application will shortly be available on the Commission’s website www.comcom.govt.nz under Public Registers.

ENDS

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