| FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MONDAY, MARCH 31, 1997
TDD (202) 514-1888
JUSTICE DEPARTMENT AND SEVEN STATE ATTORNEYS GENERAL APPROVE SALE OF THOMSON CORP. LEGAL PUBLISHING PRODUCTS TO REED-ELSEVIER INC.
WASHINGTON, D.C. The Department of Justice and seven state attorneys general today announced their approval of Thomson Corp.'s sale of 52 legal publishing products to Reed-Elsevier Inc., the parent company of Lexis-Nexis and Michie Publishing.
The Department said that divestiture of the products was required to settle a joint antitrust challenge of the merger of West Publishing Co. and Thomson Corp. by the Department's Antitrust Division and state attorneys general from California, Connecticut, Illinois, Massachusetts, New York, Washington, and Wisconsin. The settlement was approved on March 7, 1997, by the U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C.
"Reed-Elsevier's legal publishing infrastructure and its overall position in the industry should insure that the divested products remain viable and competitive with their counterpart products at Thomson, to the benefit of consumers of legal research," said Joel I. Klein, Acting Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Department's Antitrust Division.
Thomson is also required under the settlement to:
* Divest its official case reporters in California, Washington, and Wisconsin, if the relevant state governing body chooses another official publisher.
* Grant licenses to use West's internal pagination for a nominal fee, which begins in 2001, for firms with annual revenues less than $25 million, and only if there is no final invalidation of West's claimed pagination copyright.
* Extend licenses for three non-legal databases to Reed-Elsevier for five years.
The divestiture includes popular legal research products such as Auto-Cite; U.S. Code Service; Supreme Court Reporter, Lawyer's Edition; Deering's California Code Annotated; Annotated Laws of Massachusetts; and the New York Consolidated Laws Service.