Olin Corporation has requested Federal Trade Commission approval to divest its 50 percent interest in Chlor-Chem Ltd., a joint venture located in the United Kingdom, to Schering Agrochemicals Holdings Ltd. The application will be subject to public comment for 30 days, through June 19.
Olin is based in Stamford, Connecticut. Schering Agro- chemicals is a subsidiary of Schering A.G., a multinational pharmaceutical company headquartered in Berlin, Germany. Schering or one of its affiliates has owned the other half of Chlor-Chem since Olin acquired its 50 percent share from FMC Corporation in 1985.
Prior FTC approval of the divestiture is required under a 1990 Commission order that resulted from the FTC's challenge of Olin's 1985 acquisition of FMC assets. The Commission held that the acquisition could substantially reduce competition in the U.S. market for dry pool-sanitizing chemicals, and required Olin to divest the former FMC assets to an entity or entities that would operate them so as to restore the lost competition. The Commission decision and order were affirmed on appeal by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, and became final in February 1994, when the Supreme Court denied Olin's petition to hear the case.
Olin already has submitted applications for approval to divest other FMC assets as required by the order, and those applications are pending at the Commission. As to this proposed divestiture, Olin maintains in its application that, because Chlor-Chem sales of pool chemicals in the United States are negligible, the divestiture will have no competitive consequence here. With this divestiture, Olin said, it will complete the divestitures required by the Commission order.
Comments on the application should be addressed to the FTC, Office of the Secretary, 6th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20580.
Copies of this divestiture application and other documents associated with this case are available from the FTC's Public Reference Branch, Room 130, same address as above.
(FTC Docket No. 9196)