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Merger cleared between TGS and PGS in Norway

30.04.2024 - Competition, market and regulation

On the 18th of September, TGS and PGS, both listed on the Oslo Stock Exchange, announced their intention to merge. The merger was notified both to the Norwegian Competition Authority (NCA) and the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) in the UK.

Advokatfirmaet Schjødt were TGS legal counsel during the merger investigation, assisted by Oslo Economics during the NCA’s phase-II investigation in Norway.

TGS and PGS are two Norwegian companies, focusing on marine seismic-data, and operating globally. Their services are often requested by energy companies active in the offshore oil- and gas sector, Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS), and offshore wind.

Since 2014, the industry has seen a significant consolidation and there are currently few independent players left in the market. Following the notification and initial assessment, the NCA were concerned that the merger could significantly impede competition and opened an in-depth phase-II investigation.

TGS and PGS are large players in the marine seismic data sector, both having extensive multi-client libraires of data of the Norwegian Continental Shelf. However, the parties are significantly differentiated along several important dimensions, and their multi-client libraries only have marginal areas of overlap. A key difference between the parties in the collection of traditional streamer data is that TGS has never owned any ships and has relied on leasing streamer-ships, whereas PGS owns a fleet of ships with the latest technology.

The NCA’s decision not to intervene, after a thorough investigation, implies that the NCA did not find that the merger is likely to harm competition. The CMA is still investigating the merger in phase-I.

Oslo Economics’ team consisted of Partner Jostein Skaar, Director Harald Bergh, and Senior Economist Martin Bergqvist. As the larges competition economic consultancy in Norway, we have an extensive experience helping clients with merger investigations by the NCA. For more information on our experience and expertise, see our page here.

Jostein Skaar
Jostein Skaar
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