Report: Electrolux offers to settle with government over GE Appliances sale
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Electrolux lawyers have offered to settle a dispute with the U.S. Justice Department over the company's planned acquisition of General Electric's Louisville-based appliance division, according to a report by Reuters.
But the Justice Department's attorney said the two sides remain far apart, according to the report, which cites comments made at a court hearing Wednesday in Washington, D.C.
The government and Electrolux -- along with GE -- are racing through subpoenas and document production in preparation for a Nov. 9 trial before U.S. District Judge Emmett Sullivan. The trial is being fast-tracked so Electrolux and GE can close the sale before the end of the year as projected, assuming a favorable outcome.
The Justice Department sued on July 1 to block sale on antitrust grounds. The government claims the combination would drive up the price of cooking appliances sold to volume buyers like home builders and property managers.
Electrolux's lawyers have said the government fails to consider the role of recent entrants to the appliance market like Samsung and LG, among other criticisms.
GE's appliance division is one of Louisville's most important employers. Some 3,800 hourly employees work at Appliance Park, and the division employs an additional 2,200 white-collar workers.