Petition to reopen and modify Commission consent order: The Commission has received a petition from Wright Medical Technology, Inc. (Wright) to reopen and modify a 1994 consent order conditionally approving Wright’s cash tender offer for all shares of common stock and outstanding convertible preferred stock of Orthomet, Inc. Under the terms of that order, which was finalized in 1995, for 10 years, Wright was required to obtain prior Commission approval before: 1) acquiring more than one percent of the stock, share capital, or other equity interest in any concern that has filed a 510(k) application or IDE application relating to orthopaedic finger implants or had announced the intention to do so, or has received FDA approval related to such implants; 2) acquiring any assets relating to such implants for which FDA approval has been sought, the intention to seek such approval has been announced, or such approval has been received; and 3) entering into any agreement with the Mayo Foundation relating to such implants.
Through its petition, Wright has requested the final order be reopened and that the prior approval requirement be eliminated, stating that this modification would be in the public interest. The petition cites a policy announced by the Commission on June 22, 1995, stating that the Commission no longer routinely would require prior-approval provisions in orders issued in competition cases because the HSR Act had shown itself to be an effective tool for identifying, investigating, and challenging proposed large acquisitions that are likely to have an anticompetitive effect. The policy statement also stated that, in ruling on petitions to reopen and modify orders that included prior-approval provisions, the Commission would apply a rebuttable presumption that removing prior-approval provisions from existing orders is in the public interest.
The FTC is accepting public comments on the petition for 30 days, until October 15, 2003, after which the Commission will determine whether to approve the petition. Comments should be sent to FTC Office of the Secretary, 600 Pennsylvania Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20580. (Docket No. C-3564; staff contact is Daniel P. Ducore, Bureau of Competition, 202-326-2526; see press releases dated December 8, 1994 and March 30, 1995).
Following a public comment period, the Commission has approved final consent orders in matters concerning two Intrastate Movers Rate Associations, the Minnesota Transport Services Association and the Iowa Movers and Warehousemen’s Association. The FTC vote to approve each final order was 4-0-1, with Commissioner Pamela Jones Harbour not participating. (FTC File No. 021-0115; staff contact is Dana F. Abrahamsen, 202-326-2906; see press release dated August 1, 2003).
Copies of the documents mentioned in this release are available from the FTC’s Web site at http://www.ftc.gov and also from the FTC’s Consumer Response Center, Room 130, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20580. Call toll-free: 1-877-FTC-HELP.