Commerce Commission decision on duty free acquisition

24 June 2008

On 28 March 2008 the Commerce Commission declined to grant clearance for DFS Group Limited (DFS Group) to acquire 100 per cent of the shares in The Nuance Group.

The Commerce Commission has now released its reasons and these can be viewed on the Commission's website.

Auckland Airport is reviewing the Commerce Commission's reasons and any implications they may have for its decision to move from two to one duty free operators at Auckland Airport. Auckland Airport notes that the Commerce Commission's decision in relation to DFS Group's clearance application is an issue separate from the Commission's current investigation into Auckland Airport's decision to move from having two duty free operators to one. That investigation remains in progress.

Until the current Commerce Commission investigation is concluded, and any effects arising there from are assessed, any impact on duty free concession revenue to be received by Auckland Airport cannot be determined.

Auckland Airport considers that it has not breached the provisions of the Commerce Act. The move from two duty free operators to one operator will improve the delivery of duty free retail services to the public at Auckland Airport by enhancing the depth and breadth of goods offered and make it a more attractive and competitive shopping destination relative to other international airports. Auckland Airport has been and will continue to work constructively with the Commerce Commission to assist it in its investigation.

For further information, please contact:

Lucy Powell
Head of communications
Tel +64 9 256 8866
Tel +64 0 21 995 710