Bundeskartellamt clears takeover of Rhön-Klinikum

by Thorsten Koch

According to the German authority for economic regulation, the Bundeskartellamt, the hospital chain Asklepios, which is privately owned, can take over the operator Rhön-Klinikum. “There is no spatial overlap in the vast majority of Asklepios and Rhön clinic locations,” commented the President of the Cartel Authority, Andreas Mundt. Only in the Gießen and Marburg region would the two groups compete for inpatient acute care.

According to information dating from February, Rhön founder Eugen Münch will retain a 16 percent stake in the joint venture, and all other Rhön shareholders will receive an offer of 18 Euros per share on the part of Asklepios. The offer’s deadline is June 17. After a bidding competition, Asklepios had already taken over 50 percent of Rhön.

General meeting scheduled

Resistance to the takeover comes from shareholder Braun, who owns 25 percent of the shares in Rhön. A general meeting was scheduled for June 3.

Asklepios operates 160 medical facilities in Germany – not only hospitals, but also care centers and rehabilitation clinics. It is the second largest clinic operator after a Fresenius company, Helios. There is hardly any price competition between the clinics. However, this is due to necessary regulation. A variety of offers and quality for the patients of the various facilities are guaranteed, according to the Bundeskartellamt.

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