Consultation begins on Zoetis’ proposed divestiture remedy

ACCC

The ACCC is seeking views on a proposed court-enforceable undertaking offered by Zoetis in relation to its proposed acquisition of Jurox.

Zoetis and Jurox develop, manufacture, and sell animal health products that detect, prevent, and treat health issues in companion and production animals.

On 17 February 2022, the ACCC published a statement of issues outlining preliminary competition concerns with the proposed acquisition. Both companies supply intramammary antibiotics for dry and lactating cows, teat sealants for cows and parasiticides for sheep. The statement of issues raised concerns that the proposed acquisition would remove one of Zoetis’ closest competitors for these products in markets that are already highly concentrated.

Following consultation after the statement of issues was released, the ACCC decided that the proposed acquisition was unlikely to substantially lessen competition in the supply of sheep parasiticides or various companion animal products to veterinarians, including opioid and non-opioid sedatives, antidotes for sedatives, corticosteroids and penicillin.

The ACCC also concluded that the acquisition was unlikely to provide Zoetis with the ability and incentive to engage in anti-competitive bundling with Jurox’s Alfaxan product.

To address the ACCC’s remaining concerns, Zoetis has offered a court-enforceable undertaking to divest rights to Jurox’s intramammary antibiotic for dry and lactating cows and teat sealant products for cows to a purchaser approved by the ACCC.

These products include Jurox’s Ampiclox LC and DC, Juraclox LA, Maxalac LC and DC and U-Seal products.

“In assessing Zoetis’ proposed undertaking, the ACCC will need to be satisfied that the undertaking would effectively address our competition concerns in relation to intramammary antibiotics and teat sealants for cows. The proposed undertaking would also need to ensure that the ACCC-approved purchaser has the opportunity to meaningfully compete in the supply of intramammary antibiotics and teat sealants for cows,” ACCC Deputy Chair Mick Keogh said.

The ACCC invites submissions on the proposed undertaking by 25 August 2022.

“Consistent with our usual practice of publicly consulting when divestitures are proposed, this public consultation should not be viewed as a signal that the ACCC will ultimately accept the proposed divestiture undertakings and not oppose the transaction,” Mr Keogh said.

More information, including the undertaking proposed by Zoetis, is available on the ACCC’s public register.

Background

Zoetis is a public company listed on the New York Stock Exchange. Zoetis operates in global development, manufacturing and marketing of veterinary medicines and vaccines for companion animals and production animals.

Jurox is a private family-owned veterinary pharmaceutical company based in Australia. Jurox researches, develops, manufactures, and sells a range of over-the-counter products and veterinary medicines. Jurox’s products are marketed in over 20 countries globally and most are manufactured at Jurox’s plant in Rutherford, New South Wales.

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