December 3, 2019 / 5:13 PM / 6 days ago

Varta gains conditional EU okay to buy Energizer's assets

BRUSSELS, Dec 3 (Reuters) - German battery maker Varta secured EU antitrust approval on Tuesday to buy U.S rival Energizer's Varta branded consumer batteries business after pledging to supply its products to wholesalers globally.

Energizer announced the deal in May to address the European Commission's concerns about its $1.25 billion bid for U.S. consumer products company Spectrum's global auto care business last year.

The EU competition enforcer said it had been concerned that the Varta deal might shut out rivals or lead to price hikes, prompting the company to offer concessions.

"In order to address these concerns, Varta AG proposed to globally supply hearing aid batteries to any company currently or potentially active in the wholesale supply of hearing aid batteries under their own brand under certain conditions for a set period of time," the Commission said. (Reporting by Foo Yun Chee)

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