EU Competition Law: European Commission Imposes €20 Million Fine for Failing to Notify a Merger Under the EU Merger Regulation

Sullivan & Cromwell LLP - 24 July 2014

On 23 July 2014, the European Commission fined Marine Harvest ASA €20 million for failing to notify its acquisition of Morpol ASA in accordance with the EU Merger Regulation and closing the transaction prior to receiving the European Commission’s approval.  This is the first time the European Commission has imposed a fine in relation to a two-step transaction comprising a sale of a block of shares followed by a mandatory public bid for the remainder of the target’s shares.  The level of fine is a further reminder that failure to comply with the EU Merger Regulation can have significant financial and reputational consequences.