FTC Reopens and Sets Aside Two Commission Orders Related to Agriums Now-Abandoned Acquisition of CF Industries

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Following a public comment period, the Federal Trade Commission has reopened and set aside two related FTC orders, in response to a petition by Agrium Inc. The Decision and Order required Agrium, an agricultural products supplier, to divest a range of assets, to settle the Commission’s allegations that Agrium’s proposed acquisition of competitor CF Industries Holdings, Inc. would lessen competition. The Order to Hold Separate and Maintain Assets required Agrium to hold and maintain separate its anhydrous ammonia terminal in Marseilles, Illinois.

After the FTC issued its orders, Agrium abandoned its proposed acquisition of CF Holdings. Accordingly, the FTC states, “it is altogether unlikely that the Decision and Order’s divestiture obligations will ever arise, and so they should be set aside. Further, without the divestiture requirement in place, there is no reason to retain Agrium’s obligations to continue observing the temporary requirements under the Hold Separate Order.”

The Commission vote to reopen and set aside the Decision and Order and Order to Hold Separate and Maintain Assets was 5-0. (FTC Docket No. C-4227; the staff contact is Eric D. Rohlck, Bureau of Competition, 202-326-2681. See related press release dated December 23, 2009)

Copies of the document 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 13.2011.wpd)

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