LS-L&F Establishment of JV / LS HOLDINGS
Deals & Cases
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LK’s Antitrust and Competition Practice Group represented LS Corp. in its filing of merger notifications in Korea, China, Vietnam and Poland and in responding to the relevant competition authorities’ review of the proposed establishment of a JV with L&F Co., Ltd to produce precursors, a key component of secondary batteries.
In this case, it was particularly important to quickly and efficiently respond to inquiries made by competition authorities due to the tight timeline between the signing of the JV agreement between the companies and set date for the establishment of the JV. LK’s Antitrust and Competition Practice Group swiftly prepared the merger notification for submission to the KFTC, and conducted an analysis of foreign merger filing obligations, and assisted LS in preparing the merger notifications for submission in Vietnam, China, and Poland. LK’s efforts in explaining the details of the proposed JV, structure of the market for secondary batteries, precursors and anodes, and successful demonstration that the proposed JV does not restrict competition in the relevant markets to the KFTC, resulted in the KFTC’s expedited clearance.
During the KFTC’s review of the proposed JV, LK’s Antitrust and Competition Practice Group successfully asserted (1) the secondary battery industry is rapidly changing as a result of the United States’ Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) and (2) the transaction will create an internal value chain for the production of raw materials for precursors, precursors and anodes for secondary batteries in Korea. The KFTC issued several RFIs on the market definition of precursors and anodes, and on the restriction of competition in those markets, but LK’s Antitrust and Competition Practice Group responded to the RFIs in a swift and effective manner based on its deep and extensive knowledge of the secondary battery industry. Based thereon, LK was able to obtain unconditional clearance in less than two months from the KFTC, despite the issuance of RFIs, and from the Polish competition authority at around the same time.
LK’s Antitrust and Competition Practice Group has also successfully assisted LS in responding to merger clearance reviews that took place in Poland, China and Vietnam. Although the foreign authorities raised several questions regarding the structure of the transaction, details of the industry, and whether the transaction can raise any anti-competitive effect in their jurisdiction, LK prepared the responses that adequately addressed the competition authorities’ inquiries. Especially, despite the Vietnamese Competition Commission has newly been established and there were less staff reviewing merger notifications than usual, LK’s swift assistance of the parties and smooth collaboration with other global law firms enabled LS to receive clearance on an earlier time than estimated.
Through LK’s deep understanding and industry expertise, exceptional response capabilities in merger reviews, and ability to collaborate with other global law firms, LK will continue to strive to assist its clients for their merger filings, in large scale global transactions.