LONDON (July 16)—The United Kingdom's Competition Commission has launched an investigation into a bid by Duralay International Holdings Ltd. to acquire Gates Consumer and Industrial, a division of Gates U.K. Ltd., citing concerns about Duralay's potential market dominance in the carpet underlay business. A decision on the deal is to be made by Oct. 18. The Dumfries, Scotland-based Gates division makes rubber products including carpet underlay, specialized flooring and footwear, under the brand names such as Tredaire, Gripperrods and Hunter. Duralay was formed in 1996 by a management buyout of the underlay and related accessories business of the BBA Group. The company reported sales of $98 million and pre-tax profits of $7 million for the year ended May 2000. Competition authorities are concerned about the firms' combined position in the $135 million U.K. underlay market, which would be up to 75 percent.
U.K. Competition Commission investigates Gates unit acquisition request
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