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ASPEN PHARMACARE HOLDINGS LIMITED - Settlement discussion in respect of the UK Competition Authority Investigation

Release Date: 14/08/2019 08:00:00      Code(s): APN       PDF(s):  
Settlement discussion in respect of the UK Competition Authority Investigation

(Incorporated in the Republic of South Africa) (“Aspen Holdings”)
Registration number: 1985/0002935/06
Share code: APN
ISIN: ZAE000066692
and its subsidiaries (collectively “Aspen” or “the Group”)


Shareholders are referred to Aspen’s SENS announcement of 13 October 2017 wherein it was confirmed
that the UK Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA”) had opened an investigation into Aspen’s alleged
anti-competitive conduct under Articles 101 and 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European
Union (“TFEU”) in relation to the supply of Fludrocortisone acetate 0.1 mg tablets (“Fludrocortisone”) and
Dexamethasone 2 mg tablets (“Dexamethasone”) in the UK. Subsequently, the CMA advised Aspen that
it would not be proceeding with its investigation in relation to Dexamethasone.

Aspen has offered commitments (“Commitments”) to the CMA for the purposes of addressing the
competition concerns arising from certain aspects of the CMA’s investigation. The CMA has given notice
that it proposes to accept the Commitments.

In terms of the Commitments: -
1.    Aspen will dispose of its rights to the ambient Fludrocortisone in the UK to an independent third
      party in accordance with a prescribed process, overseen by the CMA;
2.    Aspen will reintroduce the cold storage Fludrocortisone into the UK market in accordance with a
      prescribed process, overseen by the CMA; and
3.    Aspen will make an ex-gratia payment in the aggregate amount of £8million to -
      3.1 the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care in the amount of £6,485,600;
      3.2 the Scottish Ministers in the amount of £788,000;
      3.3 the Welsh Ministers in the amount of £455,200; and
      3.4 the Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety for Northern Ireland in the amount
           of £271,200.

The giving of the Commitments does not constitute an admission of any wrongdoing by Aspen with
respect to the alleged anti-competitive conduct under Article 102 of the TFEU. In addition, the
Commitments remain subject to the CMA’s final approval.

The CMA and Aspen have entered into settlement discussions in respect of Aspen’s alleged anti-
competitive conduct under Article 101 of the TFEU. Within the context that historically Aspen had the
only Fludrocortisone in the UK, Aspen has admitted liability for entering into an agreement to acquire a
potential competitor Fludrocortisone with the consequence that the conclusion of this agreement
resulted in anti-competitive behaviour. Pursuant to Aspen’s aforesaid admission, the CMA will impose a
penalty on Aspen for an infringement under Article 101 of the TFEU which shall not exceed GBP 2,101,954.
The Commitments offered by Aspen and the settlement discussions being undertaken between the CMA
and Aspen reflect the Group’s willingness to address the concerns raised by Competition Authorities into
alleged anti-competitive conduct by Aspen. The Group remains committed to the resolution of other
outstanding investigations in the interest of patients.

14 August 2019

Investec Bank Limited

Date: 14/08/2019 08:00:00
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