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Tactical Sea Swift withdrawal in pursuit of Toll Marine

Amended merger application to come after initial document is ditched


Sea Swift remains committed to its year-long intention to buy Toll Marine Logistics Australia, despite some uncertainty immediately following a regulatory announcement.

Sea Swift and Toll have sought an Australian Competition Tribunal ruling to back their case after effectively being blocked by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC).

The ACCC’s advice that Sea Swift had withdrawn its application for authorisation to acquire Toll Marine was interpreted in some quarters to be a dropping of the quest for the Toll division’s Northern Territory and far north Queensland business altogether.

Bolstering that belief was the ACCC saying “the Tribunal hearing, which was scheduled to commence on 30 November 2015, will now not proceed”, and its already stated belief that the deal as it stands it “was likely to have the effect of substantially lessening competition”.

Now Sea Swift CEO Fred White has explained the division remains a target for his firm.

“Despite recent media reports, Sea Swift has not withdrawn from its proposed acquisition of Toll Marine assets in the Northern Territory and Queensland,” White emphasises.

“Both Sea Swift and Toll remain fully committed to the proposed acquisition.

“Sea Swift lodged an application for merger clearance with the Australian Competition Tribunal and our expectation was that the tribunal would make its decision prior to Christmas.

“In preparing for the clearance, Sea Swift has decided to withdraw the initial application so that it can be amended in order to further strengthen our case.

“It is our intention to lodge a new application as soon as possible and likely by mid-December.

“The tribunal process will recommence upon this submission, when a new revised timeline for the process will be advised.

“We regret the delay and the continued uncertainty for our stakeholders, and we appreciate their continued patience as we work through the approval process.”

Toll had no comment to make, a spokesperson tells ATN.



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