MADISON, Wis. – Attorney General Josh Kaul today announced he is taking action to resolve antitrust concerns raised by the proposed $4.6 billion-dollar merger between Waste Management, Inc. and Advanced Disposal Services Inc.—two of the largest providers of waste disposal and collection services in Wisconsin and throughout the United States. Attorney General Kaul is joined by the U.S. Department of Justice and four other states in the agreement.
“Wisconsin DOJ worked together with US DOJ and other states to prevent anticompetitive practices that would affect waste and recycling disposal. Fair competition will help protect consumers and municipalities in Wisconsin from artificially inflated costs for this critical service,” said Attorney General Kaul.
The agreement—which resolves an extensive review of the proposed merger—requires Waste Management and Advanced Disposal Services to divest key assets across several Wisconsin markets to GFL Environmental. The divestiture preserves competition in Wisconsin, introduces GFL as a new competitor to the state and establishes a foothold for GFL to compete across multiple Wisconsin markets.
Waste Management will be required to divest 15 landfills, 37 transfer stations, 29 hauling locations, over 200 waste collection routes, and other assets in order to proceed with its $4.6 billion acquisition of Advanced Disposal Services. Without the divestiture, the proposed acquisition would substantially lessen competition for small container commercial waste collection or municipal solid waste disposal services in over 50 local markets nationwide.
U.S. DOJ, along with Wisconsin, Florida, Pennsylvania, Minnesota and Illinois, filed a civil lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia challenging the proposed transaction. The complaint alleges that the merger would substantially decrease competition in multiple waste collection and disposal markets throughout the U.S., including in several Wisconsin markets. The proposed final judgment, if approved by the court, will resolve the anticompetitive concerns and the lawsuit.