The EU Commission refines its analysis of relevant markets in the airline sector and accepts slot divestitures with grandfathered rights as a remedy (Lufthansa / SN Airholdings)

On 22 June 2009, the European Commission approved the acquisition by Deutsche Lufthansa AG («Lufthansa») of SN Airholding SA/NV, the holding company of SN Brussels Airlines («SN Brussels»), subject to commitments. This decision indicates that the Commission is moving towards a more nuanced analysis of relevant markets in the airline sector and that it recognizes the need to give the parties some flexibility in designing slot divestitures so as to make them commercially attractive to potential new entrants. Lufthansa notified the proposed transaction to the Commission on 26 November 2008, whereby Lufthansa would initially acquire 45% of the shares of SN Airholding SA/NV, with call options on the remaining shares exercisable in 2011. While the transaction would be conducted in two parts,

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  • Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)

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David Hull, The EU Commission refines its analysis of relevant markets in the airline sector and accepts slot divestitures with grandfathered rights as a remedy (Lufthansa / SN Airholdings), 22 June 2009, e-Competitions June 2009, Art. N° 34959

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