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Mainland to acquire printing assets of Inkwise


Issued 27 June 2019
Release No. 161

Commission grants clearance for Mainland to acquire printing assets of Inkwise


The Commerce Commission has granted clearance for Mainland Print Limited to acquire the heatset and coldset web offset printing assets of Inkwise Limited.

In considering Mainland’s application, the Commission focused on competition issues in the market for the supply of coldset printing services in the South Island and in the national market for the supply of heatset printing services.

Chair Anna Rawlings said the Commission is satisfied that the acquisition is unlikely to substantially lessen competition in any New Zealand market.

“We consider that the presence of a major competing supplier in each market with significant excess capacity is likely to constrain the ability of Mainland, and its shareholders, to raise prices, reduce service quality or foreclose downstream publishers,” Ms Rawlings said.

“In addition, we considered whether the acquisition could affect competition by enabling Mainland to coordinate with its competitors. However, we are satisfied on the evidence before us that the market is currently delivering competitive outcomes and that the proposed acquisition is not likely to substantially change that situation.”

A public version of the written reasons for the decision will be available on the Commission’s case registerin the near future.

Background

Inkwise is based in Rolleston and provides heatset printing services to magazine publishers and retail catalogue customers, and coldset printing services to newspaper publishers.

Mainland is a recently established joint venture company owned in equal shares by Blue Star Group (New Zealand) Limited and Allied Press Limited.
Blue Star provides a range of commercial printing services including heatset printing services to magazine publishers and retail catalogue customers. These services are provided through its division called Webstar, which has printing operations in Masterton and Auckland.

Allied Press is a South Island based publisher of daily and community newspapers which has interests in newspaper printing operations in Dunedin, Alexandra and Greymouth. Allied Press also provides coldset printing services to other newspaper publishers.

The Commission will give clearance to a proposed merger if it is satisfied that it would be unlikely to have the effect of substantially lessening competition in any market in New Zealand. Further information explaining how the Commission assesses a merger application is available on our website.

ends

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