Poultry companies battle it out in Tribunal Hearing

                                                                                                                            21 March 2016


Poultry companies battle it out in Tribunal Hearing

Sovereign Foods has approached the Competition Tribunal directly for an order that should a competitor Country Bird Group directly or indirectly reinstate rights in/and to its existing Sovereign shares and/or acquire additional shares, that this be considered a merger. 

Country Bird would then be required to notify the merger to the Competition Commission.

The hearing is scheduled for Tuesday, 22 March. The Tribunal agreed to an urgent hearing ahead of the next shareholder meeting at the end of March.

Country Bird would be prohibited from voting at the end of March if the Competition Tribunal holds that the Country Bird’s holdings amounts to a merger, as the merger would need to be approved by the Competition Commission.

Sovereign is asking that Country Bird be compelled to immediately register the merger with the Competition Commission and interdict Country Bird from implementing the merger until the Commission has come to its decision.

Sovereign is asking that the Tribunal to also consider, among other things, whether the merger is likely to lessen competition in the sector, or whether it raises public interest concerns.

Sovereign alleges that its competitor is using its voting rights to prevent beneficial transactions since 2009.

Sovereign is a producer of fresh and frozen chicken portions within and beyond the borders of South Africa.

Country Bird is a competitor and direct and indirect shareholder of Sovereign. Country Bird has software specialist company, Synapp, as a majority shareholder. 


Issued by:

Chantelle Benjamin

Communications: Competition Tribunal   

Tel (012)394 1383                                     

Cell: +27 (0) 73 007 5603  

Twitter: @comptrib                                       

E-Mail: chantelleb@comptrib.co.za



On Behalf Of:

Lerato Motaung                                                   

Registrar: Competition Tribunal                                        

Tel: (012) 394 3355                                             

Cell: +27 (0) 82 556 3221                                              

E-Mail: LeratoM@comptrib.co.za