Statement of FTC's Bureau of Competition Regarding Announcement That Herff Jones and American Achievement Group Have Terminated Their Acquisition Agreement

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Herff Jones and American Achievement Group Holding Corp., the parent company of American Achievement Corporation (AAC), announced on December 5, 2008, that their acquisition agreement has been mutually terminated because the parties did not obtain the required regulatory approvals necessary to complete the transaction.

“Staff of the Bureau of Competition had been investigating the proposed transaction for months and had informed Herff Jones and AAC that we had serious concerns about the likely anticompetitive harm that would have resulted if the transaction was completed,” said David P. Wales, Acting Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Competition. “Staff gathered an impressive amount of testimonial, documentary, and economic expert evidence that this transaction was anticompetitive and would likely have resulted in higher prices and diminished service for commemorative products, including class rings. The abandonment of the deal means that consumers will continue to benefit from the important competition between Herff Jones and AAC for these products.”

The FTC’s Bureau of Competition works with the Bureau of Economics to investigate alleged anticompetitive business practices and, when appropriate, recommends that the Commission take law enforcement action. To inform the Bureau about particular business practices, call 202-326-3300, send an e-mail to, or write to the Office of Policy and Coordination, Room 394, Bureau of Competition, Federal Trade Commission, 600 Pennsylvania Ave, N.W., Washington, DC 20580. To learn more about the Bureau of Competition, read “Competition Counts” at


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