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Orthopedic and Dental Industry News Complete Archive »

Zimmer Receives Conditional Clearance from the European Commission to Acquire Biomet BY ANDREW VAHRADIAN, MARCH 30, 2015

The European Commission (EC) cleared Zimmer's proposed $13.4 billion cash/stock acquisition of Biomet, on the condition that the combined company sell three of its European businesses.

Under the terms of the conditional clearance by the EC, Zimmer will need to divest a knee-implant business in the European Economic Area (EEA), and Biomet will be required to sell an elbow-implant unit in the EAA, and a knee-implant business in Denmark and Sweden. These asset divestitures represent the remedy package previously submitted to the EC. The regulators had antitrust concerns surrounding the degree of innovation and higher prices in the hip, knee, elbow and shoulder implant and bone cement markets. Zimmer anticipates entering into such agreements in the near term.

Zimmer announced last week that its proposed deal received clearance from the Japan Fair Trade Commission, but that the transaction still remains subject to clearance by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, as well as other customary closing conditions.

Zimmer expects the transaction, which was announced last April, to close in April 2015. In tandem, Zimmer plans to raise $7.7 billion in senior notes to finance a part of the deal's cash portion and pay down a share of Biomet's funded debt.

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