Clarke American/John H. Harland Company merger

Close up of safe

Using an analysis based on a “tournament model,” CRA economists assisted Clarke American in obtaining clearance from the Department of Justice (DOJ) for its acquisition of the John H. Harland Company. CRA Vice Presidents developed an original analysis that was more appropriate—and more consistent with the evidence and the facts of the case—than the more traditional analyses and models that the DOJ often applies in merger investigations. The CRA team showed that banks routinely narrowed the field of bidders by inviting only two of the three national vendors to submit responses to their RFP. The modeling analysis showed that even if the DOJ viewed the proposed merger as a “3-to-2”, the consolidation would not impair banks’ competitive position or eliminate an option for buyers because they already found it in their interest to use only two of the three available “major” bidding options. DOJ accepted CRA’s conclusions and cleared the transaction without conditions. This transaction created the largest secure-document printing company in the US and consolidated the number of national check printers from three to two.

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