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Lauren Rackow Publishes “Cancer-Detection Deal Tests Antitrust Merger Policy” in the New York Law Journal

Date: 12/29/22

In a new antitrust column for the New York Law Journal, Lauren Rackow writes that It is hard to think of another recent merger that has raised more knotty antitrust issues than the Illumina-Grail transaction.  He examines how antitrust authorities on both sides of the Atlantic reached opposing conclusions about the legality of an acquisition of the developer of a cancer-detection test by a DNA-sequencing supplier. The transaction does not involve the horizontal combination of competitors, but rather a vertical acquisition of a customer in an emerging and innovative market, raising concerns that, if the acquisition were not blocked, other current or potential customers—developers of cancer-detection tests—might be foreclosed from access to critical technology. Decision-makers also had to confront the buyer’s commitment to solve the concerns by promising not to discriminate against these other customers. Adding further complexity, these merger challenges arose in an unusual procedural posture—especially in Europe, where the transaction did not meet the relevant thresholds for pre-merger notification—because the parties consummated the deal while investigations on both sides of the Atlantic were ongoing.

“Cancer-Detection Deal Tests Antitrust Merger Policy”.PDF (PDF | 201.53 KB )