Gleiss Lutz advises Oji Corporation on the successful merger with Mitsubishi Paper Mills Ltd.

A Gleiss Lutz team advised the Japanese Oji Corporation, with its subsidiary Kanzan Spezialpapiere GmbH, in its merger with Mitsubishi Paper Mills Ltd., with registered office in Tokyo, Japan, and its German subsidiary Mitsubishi HiTec Paper Europe GmbH. In this complex procedure, following intensive preliminary proceedings and a Phase 1, Gleiss Lutz achieved a clearance from the Federal Cartel Office for its client without any requirements or conditions.

Oji Corporation, with registered office in Tokyo, Japan, has a turnover of approximately EUR 12 billion and around 36,000 employees worldwide. The company, which specialises in pulp and paper, is particularly active in four segments along with its subsidiaries: household and industrial materials, functional materials, forest resources and environmental marketing, as well as printing and communications media. Mitsubishi Paper Mills specialises in the manufacture, processing and sale of paper, pulp and light-sensitive materials.

With the transaction, Oji acquired a qualified minority interest in Mitsubishi Paper Mills in the context of a strategic alliance, thus obtaining sole control over Mitsubishi Paper Mills. Since the two companies are among the world’s largest manufacturers of specialist papers (especially thermal paper) and there was a great deal of overlap in their portfolios, particularly in Europe, providing the necessary advice on antitrust and merger control law required a comprehensive clarification with the authorities in order to achieve the Phase 1 clearance.

The following Gleiss Lutz team handled the matter in Europe: Dr. Christian Steinle (partner, lead) und Dr. Philipp Pichler (counsel), Dr. Lukas Aberle und Rhued Gaiser (all Competition/Antitrust, Stuttgart). In Poland, Gleiss Lutz achieved the clearance in cooperation with Schönherr.