If you can’t beat them and you can’t join them: Geisinger and Evangelical’s settlement with DOJ limits the scope of their partial acquisition and collaboration

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In “If You Can’t Beat Them and You Can’t Join Them: Geisinger and Evangelical’s Settlement with DOJ Limits the Scope of Their Partial Acquisition and Collaboration,” Jeny Maier and Adam Cella cover the DOJ’s investigation, complaint, and eventual settlement with Geisinger Health (Geisinger) and Evangelical Community Hospital (Evangelical). On March 3, 2021, the DOJ Antitrust Division announced a settlement with Geisinger and Evangelical that resolved DOJ’s challenge to Geisinger’s partial acquisition of Evangelical. DOJ alleged that several features of the partial-acquisition agreement, combined with a history of close competition and cooperation between the parties (including an alleged no-poach agreement), would violate Section 7 of the Clayton Act and Section 1 of the Sherman Act. The settlement—which was subject to judicial review under the Tunney Act—prevents Geisinger from controlling or influencing Evangelical. In a move to restore competition between Geisinger and Evangelical, the settlement: (1) caps Geisinger’s ownership interest in Evangelical at 7.5%, (2) eliminates additional entanglements between the parties, (3) prohibits most information sharing, (4) sets rules for future cooperation between the parties, and (5) requires antitrust compliance programs and firewalls.