The Krieger/Höffner Group (KHG) can Join Begros Furniture Purchasing Cooperation After Extensive Modifications to Its Plans

The German Competition Authority (“the Bundeskartellamt”) has released a press release regarding KHG GmbH & Co. KG, Schönefeld (“Krieger/Höffner Group”) can join the furniture purchasing cooperation, Bedarfsgüter Großhandelsgesellschaft für Wohnung GmbH, Oberhausen (“Begros”). The Bundeskartellamt initially had competition concerns about the project which the participating companies were able to dispel by extensively modifying their original plans. The large Begros members Porta and KHG will not sell the same Begros brands for several years.

According to the relevant EU guidelines on horizontal cooperation agreements, purchasing cooperations can have anticompetitive effects if their market shares on the procurement or sales side of the market exceed 15%. In the present case the focus lay on the sales markets and not the supply side. Here the 15% limit is clearly exceeded in several regional sales markets in Eastern Germany where Porta with its large furniture stores and the discounter SB-Möbel Boss has a significant market position.

The Bundeskartellamt will observe the future development of the furniture procurement and sales markets in Germany. Should circumstances change significantly, the authority reserves the right to initiate a new proceeding.

You can find the full text here.

Kind regards,

Zumbul Attorneys at Law