FTC Approves Fidelity National Financial’s Proposal to Sell Rights to Michigan Title Plant Assets to Data Trace Information Services, Inc.
Following a public comment period, the Federal Trade Commission has approved a proposal by Fidelity National Financial, Inc. to sell rights to certain assets used in conducting real estate title searches. Fidelity is required to sell these rights to comply with an FTC Order that settled charges that Fidelity’s 2008 acquisition of three LandAmerica Financial subsidiaries reduced competition in markets for real estate title information services. This proposal resolves Commission concerns that Fidelity would be the only provider of title plant information services in the Detroit, Michigan, metropolitan area.
In the petition, Fidelity National requested FTC approval to sell rights to the Michigan Title Plant Assets to Data Trace Information Services, LLC, an independent title information services provider. The Commission has now approved the application by a vote of 5-0. (FTC File No. 091-0032; the staff contact is Elizabeth A. Piotrowski, Bureau of Competition, 202-326-2623; see press release dated July 16, 2010, at http://www.ftc.gov/opa/2010/07/fidelity.shtm)
FTC Approves Agilent Technologies’ Application to Modify an Agreement Related to its Varian Acquisition
The Federal Trade Commission has approved an application by Agilent Technologies, Inc. to modify one of the contracts that accomplished a divestiture required by a final FTC Order. The Order settled charges that Agilent’s acquisition of Varian, Inc. would reduce competition in the market for high-performance scientific measuring instruments such as gas chromatographs. A public version of the application can be found on the FTC’s website.
The final Order, which was issued on July 2, 2010, required Agilent, among other things, to sell Varian’s scientific measuring instrument business to Bruker Corporation. As part of that divestiture, Agilent and Bruker entered into a transition services agreement under which former Varian employees would, for a limited time, provide labor to Bruker for the production of instruments at the former Varian facility in Melbourne, Australia. In its application, Agilent sought to modify the terms of the transition agreement to allow the former Varian employees to work on Agilent products at times when Bruker did not require their services.
The Commission vote approving Agilent’s application was 5-0. (FTC File No. 091-0135; the staff contact is Daniel P. Ducore, Bureau of Competition, 202-326-2526. See press release dated May 14, 2010 at http://www.ftc.gov/opa/2010/05/agilent.shtm)
Copies of the documents mentioned in this release are available from the FTC’s website at http://www.ftc.gov and from the FTC’s Consumer Response Center, Room 130, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20580. Call toll-free: 1-877-FTC-HELP.(FYI 49.2010.wpd)