The Federal cartel office of the merger of Department store chains Karstadt and Kaufhof approved. The competition authority announced in Bonn.

cartel office President Andreas Mundt said: “We have reviewed the project intensively. Neither from the perspective of the consumer, nor from the point of view of the manufacturers and suppliers it was striking competition concerns.” Karstadt and Kaufhof were not many competitors in the stationary business. The online trading worry for additional competitive pressure. Even in the case of isolated analysis, Karstadt and Kaufhof have just in individual groups of goods – for example, in the area of sports, with a market share of more than 25 percent.

The joint venture will have 243 locations and approximately 32,000 employees. Under the umbrella of a new Holding company, not only the German Kaufhof and Karstadt are United branches, but also the Karstadt Sports stores, the European branches of the Outlet chain Saks Off 5th, the Galeria Inno Department stores in Belgium, the recently established Hudson’s Bay Department stores in the Netherlands, as well as a number of Internet vendors.

Austrian Karstadt-owner retains majority

The owner of Karstadt and Kaufhof, at 11. September, the two were to merge chains together. With 50.01 percent of the shares, the majority of the new company in the future in the Signa, the Austrian Holding company of the Karstadt owner René Benko. The canadian trade company HBC will hold 49.99 percent.

Karstadt and Kaufhof hope to achieve through a joint venture savings. As the reason for the merger is the increasing competition from the online trade (for subscribers).

What will be the consequences of merger for the employees and the municipalities, is currently still unclear. Particularly the employees of Kaufhof fear reduction a massive. To the closing of the possible Branches to powers of Karstadt and Kaufhof information.