Agreement reached in sale of retail gas stations in Quebec and Ontario
September 7, 2016 — OTTAWA, ON — Competition Bureau
The Competition Bureau and Couche‑Tard have reached an agreement related to the acquisition by Couche‑Tard of retail gasoline sites from Imperial Oil.
The agreement resolves the Commissioner of Competition’s concerns that the proposed transaction would likely result in a substantial lessening or prevention of competition in the retail sale of gasoline in certain markets in Ontario and the Greater Montréal Area.
Under the terms of the consent agreement registered with the Competition Tribunal, Couche‑Tard must sell the Mac’s‑branded retail gas station in Carleton Place, Ontario, and the Esso‑branded station in St‑Bruno‑de‑Montarville, Quebec.
Under the Competition Act, the Bureau has a mandate to review mergers to determine whether they are likely to result in a substantial lessening or prevention of competition. In reviewing mergers, the Bureau considers many different elements, including the impact of the proposed transaction on the level of economic concentration in the relevant industry.
- On March 8, 2016, Imperial Oil announced its intention to sell its 497 Esso retail stations to five fuel distributors, one of them being Couche‑Tard.
- Couche‑Tard is proposing to acquire 51 retail gasoline sites in the Greater Montréal Area and 242 in Ontario for an approximate C$1.7 billion.
- Imperial Oil is an integrated oil company based in Alberta with upstream, downstream and chemical operations related to crude oil, natural gas and refined products.
- Couche‑Tard is headquartered in Quebec and operates convenience stores and fuel retailing chains in North America and Europe under several banners, including Circle K, Couche‑Tard, Mac’s, Kangaroo Express, Statoil, Ingo, Topaz and Re.Store.
- Competition Bureau Statement Regarding Alimentation Couche‑Tard Inc.’s Proposed Acquisition of Retail Gasoline Sites from Imperial Oil
- The consent agreement is available on the Competition Tribunal website.
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