PONS acquires several Langenscheidt titles: Gleiss Lutz advises on successful merger control proceedings
Gleiss Lutz has advised PONS GmbH, a company of the Klett Group, on successful merger control proceedings in connection with the acquisition of rights to various published titles from Langenscheidt GmbH & Co. KG and Langenscheidt Digital GmbH & Co. KG. These titles and products will be incorporated into the current PONS publishing portfolio. The Langenscheidt brand will continue to have a market presence. After intensive preliminary and phase 1 proceedings, Gleiss Lutz was able to obtain the Federal Cartel Office’s clearance for its client without any requirements or conditions.
As one of Europe’s leading educational companies, the Klett Group is represented internationally in 16 countries. The portfolio includes traditional and state-of-the-art educational media for day-to-day use in schools as well as lesson planning materials, specialist literature and the classics. In addition, the Klett Group operates many educational institutions, ranging from day-care centres to schools, right through to distance-learning schools and universities for distance-learning and on-site-learning.
Since both PONS and Langenscheidt have a strong market position for printed dictionaries and self-study materials for language learning, the Federal Cartel Office carried out an in-depth review of the concentration, including an extensive market survey. Ultimately, the Federal Cartel Office agreed with the parties’ argument that, on the one hand, only de minimis markets were affected and, on the other, there was a large amount of competitive pressure from digital products.
The following team of Gleiss Lutz lawyers advised PONS on the merger control proceedings: Dr. Matthias Karl (partner, lead), Dr. Johannes Hertfelder, Alexandra Bruch (all competition/antitrust, Stuttgart). In Austria, Gleiss Lutz achieved merger clearance in cooperation with Schönherr.