Source: All England Reporter
Publisher Citation: [2015] All ER (D) 146 (May)
Neutral Citation: [2015] EWCA Civ 487
Court: Court of Appeal, Civil Division

Lady Justice Arden, Lord Justice Tomlinson and Sir Colin Rimer

Representation Daniel Beard QC and Rob Williams (instructed by Reynolds Porter Chamberlain LLP) for the SCOP.
  Paul Harris QC and Ben Rayment (instructed by the Competition and Markets Authority) for the CMA.
  Meredith Pickford QC and Ligia Osepciu (instructed by Hogan Lovells International LLP) for the second respondent.
Judgment Dates: 15 May 2015


Competition - Merger - Acquisition of activities - Appellant acquiring use of cross-channel vessels following liquidation of SeaFrance - Appellant employing former employees of SeaFrance - Appellant having benefit of statutory indemnity payment made to company hiring former SeaFrance employees - Respondent Competition and Mergers Authority (CMA) finding legal definition of enterprise being met and appellant having acquired much of benefit of those activities - CMA concluding relevant merger situation existing - Competition Appeal Tribunal upholding determination - Whether CMA failing to identify 'activities' being acquired - Whether CMA's conclusion being irrational - , .

The Case

Competition Merger. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) had found there to have been a relevant merger situation under s22(1) of the arising from the appellant's acquisition of cross-channel ferries from SeaFrance's liquidator and its employment of the majority of former SeaFrance employees, as a consequence of a statutory indemnity payment to the appellant for employing those redundant workers. The decision was upheld by the Competition Appeals Tribunal. The Court of Appeal, Civil Division, allowed the appeal as the CMA's finding that upon such mass re-employment there had been in reality a transfer, or a transfer 'in effect' by SeaFrance, had been irrationally wrong and one that could not properly have been made.

Practice Areas

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