Concentration and safeguards
The general trend towards the integration of fusion in the world of private biology laboratories has led to a sharp decline in the number of players. In Alsace, some 150 sites are now integrated into four groups: BioRhin-Biolia, Bio67, Biogroup and Barrand, as well as an independent site in northern Alsace.
In parallel with this phenomenon of concentration, the legislator has introduced safeguards to avoid monopoly or oligopolistic situations. Thus, the directors of the regional health agencies (ARS) may oppose the takeover if the group exceeds 25% of the analyzes performed in the region. There is even a de facto ban on exceeding the 33% threshold.
These restrictions limit Biogroup’s appetite. “In Alsace, it has become extremely concentrated, and we can no longer grow here,” said President Stéphane Eimer. The group would be so far-reaching, because if it says it has almost half of its private activity in Alsace, the percentage will fall to around 30% by integrating the public sector. And it falls even lower in the Grand Est, law enforcement.
There is also a rule prohibiting the laboratory from being in more than three health areas, “but the ban applies to the company or Biogroup is a group of companies,” the chief clarifies. Following operations this summer, Biogroup was asked to resell seven laboratories in Rhone and three laboratories in Vendée: “We are over the threshold, suddenly, crack! It’s locked, and that’s fine. You can’t be too big. And is it easy to sell, lab? “Oh yes,” replies Stephan Eimer. Will have to sell to competitors, they will be happy. »
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