Announced Actions for October 11, 1996

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Applications for approval of transactions: The FTC has received an application for prior approval for an acquisition from the following. The FTC is seeking public comments on the application for 30 days, until Nov. 12.

  • Community General Hospital, located in Reading, Pennsylvania, has applied for FTC approval to be acquired by the St. Joseph Medical Center, another Reading hospital. Prior FTC approval of the acquisition is required by a 1990 consent order, which settled charges that the consolidation of Community General and The Reading Hospital and Medical Center would substantially reduce competition in violation of antitrust laws. The order contains a provision requiring Community General to obtain FTC approval before permitting any hospital it operates in Berks County to be acquired by any entity that operates another hospital in the county. (See Jan. 31, 1990 news release for more details regarding the 1990 consent order; Docket No. C-3284) Staff contact is Dan Ducore, 202- 326-2526.

Consent agreements given final approval: Following a public comment period, the Commission has made final a consent agreement with the following. The Commission action makes the consent order binding on the respondents:

  • with Syncronys Softcorp, of Culver City, California, and three of the company’s officers, settling charges that they made misrepresentations and/or unsubstantiated claims regarding the performance of two computer software programs they manufactured -- SoftRAM and SoftRAM95 -- which they claimed could improve the performance of personal computers using Microsoft, Inc.’s Windows and Windows 95 programs. The final order prohibits the respondents from making a variety of specific misrepresen tations, including misrepresentations that these or substantially similar products (1) increase random access memory (RAM) in a computer using Windows 95 to a greater extent than other software products, (2) use compression technology to increase RAM; (3) speed up Windows 95; or (4) permit a Windows 95 user to run larger applications or to open more applications simultaneously. The order also prohibits the respondents from misrepresenting that Microsoft or any other person or organization has licensed or endorsed their product. In addition, the order requires the respondents to have appro priate substantiation for any claims they make about the effectiveness, performance, attributes or benefits of any product intended to improve computer performance. (See July 10, 1996 news release for more details regarding the consent agreement; Docket No. C-3688; Commission vote on Oct. 7 to issue the order as final was 5-0.) Staff contact is Robin Eichen, New York Regional Office, 212-264-1207.

Comments on the Community General application should be addressed to the FTC, Office of the Secretary, 6th Street and Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20580. Copies of the documents referenced above are available from the FTC’s Public Reference Branch, Room 130, at the same address; 202-326-2222; TTY for the hearing impaired 1-866-653-4261. To find out the latest news as it is announced, call the FTC NewsPhone recording at 202-326-2710. FTC news releases, related documents and other materials also are available on the Internet at the FTC’s World Wide Web site at:

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