Essilor to Appeal Against the BKA's Decision on Anti-Cartel Rules

Jun 10, 2010, 13:56 ET from Essilor

CHARENTON-LE-PONT, France, June 10, 2010 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Essilor was notified today by Germany's antitrust authority, the BundesKartellAmt (BKA), that it was being fined for allegedly creating a cartel with several optical retail store suppliers operating in the German market. The fine levied on Essilor's two German subsidiaries, Essilor GmbH and Rupp + Hubrach Optik GmbH, amounts to EUR50 million.

Essilor contests the validity of the BKA's conclusions as well as the amount of the fine, and plans to lodge an appeal with the Dusseldorf Court. No payment will be made pending a ruling by the Dusseldorf Court.

Since the beginning of the BKA inquiry, Essilor has set aside provisions of EUR9.2 million in respect of this dispute in its 2008 and 2009 accounts. The market was duly notified of the inquiry and the related provisions. Any appropriate additional provisions will be booked following a detailed analysis of BKA's notification.

As previously stated, Essilor is fully committed to the principle of free competition. The Company applies a zero tolerance approach to anti-competitive practices and expects all members of its organization to behave in an exemplary manner in this regard.

The world leader in ophthalmic optical products, Essilor International researches, develops, manufactures and markets around the world a wide range of corrective lenses to improve and protect eyesight. Its flagship brands are Varilux(R), Crizal(R), Essilor(R), Definity(R) and Xperio(TM).

Based in France, the company reported consolidated revenue of more than EUR3.2 billion in 2009, with nearly 35,000 employees and operations in 100 countries.

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The Essilor share trades on the NYSE Euronext Paris market and is included in the CAC 40 index.

Codes and symbols: ISIN: FR FR0000121667; Reuters: ESSI.PA; Bloomberg: EI:FP.

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SOURCE Essilor