Parties to the transaction
The Grandir Group has notified the Autorité de la concurrence of its plan to acquire Crèche Attitude, a subsidiary of the Sodexo Group.
The Grandir Group operates a network of private daycare centres under the Les Petits chaperons rouges brand. Crèche Attitude operates private daycare centres under the Liveli brand.
The markets concerned
This marks the first time that the Autorité has analysed the functioning of the formal childcare sector and define the relevant markets.
This sector includes childcare services provided by qualified professionals in their own homes (childminders) or in dedicated establishments (childcare facilities, or "EAJE").
During the investigation, the Autorité considered the existence of upstream and downstream markets.
The upstream markets concern the marketing of childcare services in private childcare facilities to third parties for the needs of their employees or their constituents and the management of EAJE on behalf of public entities.
The Autorité has segmented the pre-book market for childcare places in private EAJEs into three:
- the pre-book market for places in EAJEs by national private or public operators throughout the country.
- the pre-book markets for places in EAJEs by local private or public operators, who reserve places in areas corresponding to their usual place of activity.
- the pre-book markets for places in EAJEs by local and regional public authorities to supplement their public childcare service offer.
The Autorité has segmented the downstream childcare market into two: childcare services provided by EAJEs and childcare services provided by childminders.
At the end of its analysis, taking into account the position of the parties, the presence of numerous competitors, and the specific characteristics of the sector revealed during the investigation, the Autorité was able to rule out any risk of harm to competition in the markets concerned.
The Autorité has cleared the transaction unconditionally, as it is not likely to harm competition.