ACCC launches consultation on Bingo’s proposed waste divestment

Watchdog seeks views of market participants on whether Bingo's proposed divestment will address potential competition issues.

The ACCC is considering whether a proposal by waste company Bingo Industries Limited to divest its eastern Sydney waste processing plant will adequately address the ACCC’s competition concerns about Bingo’s planned acquisition of Dial-a-Dump.

Bingo currently operates 12 building and demolition (B&D) waste processing facilities in NSW, ten of them in Sydney. It is also developing a processing facility and landfill in Patons Lane in Western Sydney and a processing facility at Silverwater in Western Sydney.

Dial-a-Dump is a privately owned company, providing B&D waste collection and processing services in Sydney. It operates a waste processing facility at Alexandria and a facility at Eastern Creek which has both processing capability and a landfill.

A consultation process, launched today, will seek the views of market participants on whether Bingo’s proposed divestment is likely to address potential competition issues identified by the ACCC.

In November, the ACCC raised preliminary competition concerns about Bingo’s proposed acquisition of Dial-a-Dump, relating to the supply of building and demolition (B&D) waste processing services in Sydney, and the loss of competition between Sydney’s non-putrescible (dry) landfills.

Bingo has offered to divest its Banksmeadow processing facility in eastern Sydney to an acquirer approved by the ACCC.

The divestment would either take the form of a long-term lease of the land on which the facility is located, or the outright sale of the land.

ACCC acting chair Roger Featherston said the ACCC’s decision to consult on this undertaking by Bingo should not be interpreted as an indication that it will accept the undertaking, or that it will ultimately clear the transaction.

“Consultation is just one step of the merger review process. The ACCC will continue to consider the proposed acquisition and its potential impact on customers and the market,” he said.

Bingo’s proposed undertaking does not include any obligations in relation to its landfill sites. The ACCC is continuing its investigation in relation to this market.

The ACCC is seeking the views of market participants on the proposed divestment. This includes views on whether the acquisition of a lease over the land would affect the ability and incentives of the lessee to be an effective competitor in the future.

Parties wishing to make submissions should do so by 30 January 2019.

The proposed date for the announcement of the ACCC’s final decision is 21 February 2019.

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