CC Hails Ecowaste Sale
The Competition Commission (CC) has welcomed Stericycle Inc’s sale of Ecowaste Southwest Limited to waste management company Tradebe.
The CC required Stericycle to sell Ecowaste Southwest, a healthcare risk waste management company it bought in 2011, after it found out on 21 March that the acquisition would lessen local rivalry leading to higher prices and lower service levels in parts of the South-West of England than would have been the case in the absence of the merger.
That decision was subsequently challenged by Stericycle in the Competition Appeal Tribunal, which upheld the CC’s decision on 24 May. Final undertakings committing Stericycle to the sale were accepted in June. The sale, which was subject to the CC’s approval, was completed within two months.
Stericycle’s UK subsidiary, SRCL Limited (SRCL), collects, treats and disposes of healthcare risk waste for the medical and other sectors throughout England and Wales. Prior to the acquisition Ecowaste Southwest provided the same service in the South-West of England through its treatment facility at Avonmouth, Bristol.
CC Chairman and Chairman of the SRCL/Ecowaste Inquiry Group, Roger Witcomb, said: “We are delighted that the sale, which will protect competition and the interests of customers in the South-West, has completed. We were confident that a profitable business like Ecowaste Southwest would find a buyer and oversaw the sale to ensure it went to a viable and credible competitor like Tradebe.”
Healthcare risk waste is a category of healthcare waste that requires treatment prior to disposal and includes needles and syringes, dressings, medicines, and anatomical waste. It requires treatment prior to disposal because it is potentially infectious or could otherwise be harmful to health. The large majority of healthcare waste is produced by major NHS organizations such as Acute Trusts and Primary Care Trusts (PCTs).