Bulletin

Anticompetitive practices

Gun Jumping in Europe: An Overview of EU and National Case Law
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
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Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
In the last few years, the European Commission and national competition authorities have demonstrated an increased interest in investigating and punishing gun jumping. This development is part of a broader effort by the Commission to tighten its review of compliance with procedural aspects of (...)

Private Enforcement: An overview of the leading cases and opinions
Hausfeld (Washington)
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Hausfeld (Berlin)
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Hausfeld (London)
Private enforcement in Europe may have taken off later than in the US, but is also flourishing. In particular, 2017 saw the implementation across much of the European Union of the “Damages Directive”, which aims to standardize both substantive and procedural provisions relating to competition law (...)

Licensing agreements and competition law: An overview of EU and national case law
Berwin Leighton Paisner (Brussels)
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Berwin Leighton Paisner (Brussels)
Introduction The application of competition law as it relates to the licensing of intellectual property rights (“IPRs”) remains a topic of heated debate and development. Previous articles in e-Competitions have outlined such developments and trends at EU and Member State level and we aim in this (...)

The Romanian Competition Authority fines a chamber of notaries for cartel (Chamber of Public Notaries)
Romanian Competition Council (Bucharest)
The Competition Council sanctioned with fines of lei 2.8 million the public notaries from Suceava and Botosani* The Competition Council sanctioned the Chamber of Public Notaries from Suceava and 72 public notaries from Suceava and Botosani counties, members of this organization with fine (...)

The EU Court of Justice rules that the dissemination of misleading information is a restriction by object and excludes exemption under Article 101 §3 TFEU (Roche / Novartis)
Simmons & Simmons (Paris)
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Simmons & Simmons (Paris)
On 23 January 2018, the Court of Justice of the European Union delivered its decision on the preliminary ruling referred to it by the Italian Council of State in the dispute between Roche and Novartis on the one hand and the Italian competition authority (AGCM) on the other. In 2014, Roche and (...)

The Romanian Competition Authority fines companies selling equipment for electricity measurement for cartel (ARC BRAŞOV)
Romanian Competition Council (Bucharest)
1) The Competition Council sanctioned with €1.1 million 3 companies selling equipment for electricity measurement* The Competition Council sanctioned with fines totalling lei 4,947,086.23 (about Euros 1.1 million) three companies for the purpose of reaching an agreement in order to limit the (...)

The Romanian Competition Authority fines six companies for bid-rigging in the market of electricity consumption equipment (ECRO)
Romanian Competition Council (Bucharest)
The Competition Council applied fines of 73 millioan lei to 6 companies for the bid-rigging in the field of electricity comsumption equipment* The Competition Council sanctioned with fines totaling 73,100,870.37 lei (about € 15.8 million) six companies for the conclusion of two anticompetitive (...)

The Romanian Competition Authority fines companies and associations on the market of security services for setting minimum prices (Euroguard)
Romanian Competition Council (Bucharest)
The Competition Council sanctioned with 23.4 million lei companies and associations on the market of security services * The Competition Council sanctioned with fines totaling 23,422,255.99 lei (about 5 million euros), 33 companies and 4 associations for setting the minimum price, (...)

The Hellenic Competition Authority accepts remedies ending competition concerns related to franchise agreements in the pizza market (Roma Pizza)
Hellenic Competition Authority (Athens)
HCC has accepted commitments proposed by Roma Pizza S.A. to address competition concerns with regard to the terms of its franchise / distribution system following a complaint by former franchisees* By its unanimous decision no. 639/2017, the Chamber of the Hellenic Competition Commission (...)

The Danish Competition Authority fines a construction company for exchange of information with a competitor in a bid rigging case (Troels Jørgensen)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Denmark: Construction company pays fine in settlement for bid rigging* On 11 January 2018, the contruction company Troels Jørgensen A/S entered into a settlement with a competitor for infringing section 6 of the Danish Competition Act. The company accepted to pay a fine of DKK 3,200,000 (€ (...)

The Hungarian Competition Authority publishes new notices on fines in an effort to incentivise companies to cooperate to reduce their fines
Hungarian Competition Authority (Budapest)
According to the GVH’s new Notices on Fines significant advantages can be gained from cooperating with the authority* The Gazdasági Versenyhivatal (GVH - Hungarian Competition Authority) incentivises undertakings to remedy the harm caused to consumers as a result of competition law infringements (...)

The Turkish Competition Board concludes its preliminary investigation into possible abusive pricing policies in the furnishing sector (Doğtaş Kelebek Mobilya / Yataş Yorgan ve Yatak)
ELIG, Attorneys-at-Law (Istanbul)
Introduction On January 9 2018 the Competition Board published a reasoned decision dated September 27 2017 (17-30/487-211) following its preliminary investigation into allegations by Doğtaş Kelebek Mobilya San ve Tic AŞ that Yataş Yorgan ve Yatak San ve Tic AŞ had violated Article 4 of Law 4054 on (...)

The Polish Competition Authority issues a decision on collusion concerning ISO certificates (Prezes Urzędu Ochrony Konkurencji i Konsumentów)
WKB Wierciński Kwieciński Baehr (Warsaw)
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WKB Wierciński Kwieciński Baehr (Warsaw)
By way of its decision no. RWR 13/2017 of 29 December 2017, the President of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (“OCCP”) imposed a financial penalty exceeding PLN 461,000 (approx. EUR 112,000) on Istituto Italiano del Marchio di Qualita (“IMQ”) for fixing prices and dividing the (...)

The Russian Competition Authority sanctions companies for cartel in the market of highway repair and renovation (Technostroi)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
FAS made a decision on a bid-rigging cartel for highway repair and renovation* “Technostroi” Ltd., “No. 908 Construction Department” Ltd., and “Avtodor” Road Company” Ltd. violated Clause 2 Part 1 Article 11 of the Federal Law “On Protection of Competition” The companies concluded an anticompetitive (...)

The Moscow Arbitration Court upholds the decision of the Competition Authority in the case of suppliers cartel at the ministry of defence (Bely Medved)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
Court confirmed legitimacy of fas decision on a suppliers cartel at the ministry of defence* Moscow Arbitration Court dismissed a claim of “Bely Medved” Ltd., “Koralkin” Ltd., “Millennium Klin” Ltd. on invalidating a FAS decision, that had found these companies and the group of persons comprising (...)

The Arbitration Appeal Court of Moscow upholds the judgement of the Arbitration Court in a case on an anticompetitive agreement between medicinal drug suppliers (Pharm SKD)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
Appeal court supported fas in a case on an anticompetitive agreement of medicinal drug suppliers* The 9th Arbitration Appeal Court upheld the judgment of Moscow Arbitration Court that pronounced legitimacy and reasonableness of FAS decision on the case against “Pharm SKD” Ltd. and “Novopharm” (...)

The Czech Supreme Administrative Court allows belated ex post review of dawn raid’s legality (Delta pekarny / Bakeries cartel)
Weil, Gotshal & Manges (Prague)
On 21 December 2017, the Supreme Administrative court rejected cassation appeals of both the Czech Office for Protection of Competition (“Office”) and all three claimants (participants to bakeries cartel), namely companies Delta Pekarny, OK Rest, and Penam against the previous judgment of the (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Authority fines two construction firms for bid rigging in the market for renovation and modernisation of schools and kindergartens (Irdaiva)
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
Competition council: joint bidding of two construction firms restricted competition* The Competition Council found that joint bids submitted by two Lithuanian construction firms UAB Irdaiva and AB Panevėžio statybos trestas (PST) restricted competition “by object”, in breach of Article 5 of the (...)

The EU Court of Justice clarifies exhaustion of trademark principles and broadens the interpretation of economic links between trademark owners (Schweppes / Red Paralela)
Van Bael & Bellis
On 20 December 2017, the Court of Justice of the European Union (“ECJ”) handed down its judgment in Case C-291/16 Schweppes v Red Paralela and Others. The ECJ held that the owner of a trademark may not oppose the parallel importation of goods bearing an identical trademark but originating in (...)

The Danish Competition Authority accepts remedies proposed by companies in a case concerning an agreement on supply of cash handling and transportation services (Loomis)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Commitment decision on free choice of provider of cash handling and cash transportation services* The Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (“DCCA”) has accepted commitments offered by the parties in a case concerning an agreement on supply of cash handling and transportation services. The (...)

The Canadian Competition Bureau offers immunity in bread price-fixing probe (Loblaw / Weston)
Université d’Ottawa - University of Ottawa
Introduction On 19 December 2017, Loblaw Companies Limited (‘Loblaw’), Canada’s largest grocery store chain, and George Weston Ltd (‘Weston’), which owns national bread baker Weston Bakeries, admitted to participation in a packaged bread price-fixing scheme for more than 14 years that ran from late (...)

The Irish Competition Authority secures commitments from a number of universities to change their procurement practices in the supply of graduation gowns
Irish Competition Authority (Dublin)
CCPC secures commitments in the supply of graduation gowns* The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) has secured Commitments from a number of Irish universities to change their procurement practices in the supply of graduation gowns. Following a complaint, the CCPC sought (...)

The German Competition Authority, with the Dutch Competition Authority, fines three undertakings for cartel in the harbor towage sector (Fairplay / Bugsier / Petersen & Alpers)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt imposes fines on harbour towage service providers* The Bundeskartellamt has imposed fines amounting to approx. 13 million euros on three harbour towage service providers. The companies concerned are Fairplay Schleppdampfschiffsreederei Richard Borchard GmbH, Hamburg, (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority, with the German Competition Authority, fines three undertakings for cartel in the harbor towage sector (Fairplay / Bugsier / Petersen & Alpers)
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (The Hague)
Collaboration between Bundeskartellamt and ACM leads to fines in towage sector* Today, the German competition authority, the Bundeskartellamt, announced it has imposed fines on three undertakings and their executives, totaling approximately EUR 13 million in connection with their involvement (...)

The Finnish Market Court fines several coach companies for cartel (Finnish Bus and Coach Association / Matkahuolto)
Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (Helsinki)
The Market Court imposed penalty payments on several coach companies, the Finnish Bus and Coach Association and Matkahuolto* In its decision issued on 14 December 2017, the Market Court considered that the coach companies*), Finnish Bus and Coach Association and Matkahuolto have been guilty of (...)

The UK Competition Authority fines two laundry companies for market sharing (Micronclean)
UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) (London)
£1.71m fine for laundry companies found to be market sharing* The CMA has fined 2 suppliers of ‘cleanroom’ laundry services for breaking competition law by agreeing not to compete for each other’s customers. It follows enforcement action by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) against the (...)

The EU Court of Justice dismisses the appeal against a judgment upholding the fine against two undertakings for a non-compete agreement in the telecom sector (Telefonica)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 13 December 2017, the Court of Justice of the European Union (“ECJ”) dismissed the appeal lodged by telecommunication operator Telefónica against the General Court’s (“GC”) judgment largely upholding a 2013 Commission decision, which imposed a fine on Telefónica for agreeing not to compete with (...)

The Moscow Arbitration Court upholds the decision of the Competition Authority in the case of the cartel between manufacturers of oil-submersible cable (Kama Cable)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
Cassation court supported fas in a case on a cartel between manufacturers of oil-submersible cable* The violators are fined over 250 million RUB On 13 December 2017, the Arbitration Court of the Moscow District upheld the judgment of Moscow Arbitration Court and the ruling of the 9th (...)

The Russian Competition Authority sanctions suppliers of supercomputers for cartel (Aquarius Production)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
Suppliers of supercomputers for kurchatov institute are guilty of taking part in a cartel* FAS Commission found that suppliers of equipment for Kurchatov institute violated the antimonopoly law. The companies may pay big fines for the cartel Having investigated the case, FAS found that (...)

The EU Commission decides that an international sport association has breached European competition rules (International Skating Union)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: International Skating Union’s restrictive penalties on athletes breach EU competition rules* The European Commission has decided that International Skating Union (ISU) rules imposing severe penalties on athletes participating in speed skating competitions that are not authorised by (...)

The EU Court of Justice rules in favour of restrictions on the use of platforms in a selective distribution system for luxury products (Coty)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 6 December 2017, the Court of Justice of the European Union (the “ECJ” or the “Court”) handed down its eagerly anticipated judgment in Coty (C-230/16). In general, the ECJ closely follows the opinion of Advocate General (“AG”) Nils Wahl, published on 26 July 2016 (see VBB on Compe- tition Law, (...)

The EU Court of Justice hands down an anticipated judgment on the possibility for a producer of luxury goods to restrict the selling of goods on third party online platforms outside of its selective distribution network (Coty)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 6 December 2017, the Court of Justice of the European Union (the ECJ or the Court) handed down its eagerly anticipated judgment in Coty (C-230/16). In general, the ECJ closely follows the opinion of Advocate General Wahl (AG Wahl), published on 26 July 2016, in essentially holding that: the (...)

The EU Court of Justice holds that suppliers of luxury goods may under certain conditions restrict authorised retailers in a selective distribution system not to sell their goods via third-party online platforms to preserve their products’ ‘luxury image’ (Coty Germany)
Hogan Lovells (Munich)
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European University Viadrina Frankfurt (Oder)
I. Introduction On 6 December 2017, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) handed down its long-awaited judgment on the permissibility of restrictions by suppliers of luxury goods to sell their products via third-party online platforms under Article 101 (1) TFEU. The question has been subject to (...)

The Danish Competition Authority sanctions an association of camera distributors for cartel (Team DS)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Association of camera distributors has coordinated prices and exchanged information about its members prices and other competitive parameters* On 1 December 2017, the Danish Competition Council (DCC) ruled in a case concerning anticompetitive behaviour regarding the camera market. The DCC (...)

The French Competition Authority rejects a complaint filed by a museum accusing competitors of cartel (Musée de Montmartre)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence rejects the referral filed by the Musée de Montmartre against the InterMusées association.* The association Inter-Musées is a collective of several museums in the Ile-de-France region. It markets the « Paris Museum Pass » which gives access to these museums upon (...)

The Russian Competition Authority sanctions a cartel on the school food products market
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
FAS continues its efforts to decartelize food products supplies* he Commission of Udmurtia OFAS found bid-rigging collusion in supplies of food products to schools, pres-school day-care centres and other state and municipal institutions for the total amount over 50 million RUB Four individual (...)

The EU Court of Justice deals a blow to the Commission’s power to close antitrust investigations with commitment decisions (Gasorba / Repsol)
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
On November 23, 2017, the Court of Justice of the European Union (Court of Justice) dealt a blow to the European Commission’s (Commission) power to close antitrust investigations with commitment decisions, with its ruling in Case C-547/16 Gasorba et al. v. Repsol. The Court of Justice ruled that (...)

The EU Commission fines several car safety equipment suppliers in a cartel settlement case (Tokai Rika, Takata, Autoliv, Toyoda Gosei and Marutaka)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 22 November 2017, the European Commission announced that it had imposed nes totalling € 34 million on five car safety equipment suppliers for taking part in one or more of four separate cartels for the supply of car safety equipment to some Japanese car manufacturers in the EEA. The (...)

Unilateral Practices

The German Competition Authority closes proceeding on the conditions of supply for raw milk in a case against Germany’s largest dairy (Deutsche Milchkontor)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Proceeding against DMK dairy discontinued* The Bundeskartellamt has discontinued its proceeding on the conditions of supply for raw milk which was conducted as a sample case against Germany’s largest dairy, Deutsche Milchkontor eG. Andreas Mundt, President of the Bundeskartellamt: "We have (...)

The Romanian Competition Authority opens a procedure against a company suspected of abuse of dominance in the mediation services market through online platforms (Dante International)
Romanian Competition Council (Bucharest)
The Competition Council analyses a possible abuse of dominant position of Dante International SA* The Competition Council opened an investigation on a possible abuse of dominant position by Dante International SA on the mediation services market through online platforms in Romania. Dante (...)

The Malaysian Competition Appeal Tribunal upholds a decision of the Competition Authority in a case of abuse of dominance in the provision and management of online foreign workers permit renewals (My E.G)
Wong Partners (Baker McKenzie Kuala Lumpur)
On 28 December 2017, the Competition Appeal Tribunal (CAT) upheld the Malaysian Competition Commission’s (MyCC) decision on 24 June 2016 that My E.G. Services Berhad (MyEG) and its wholly-owned subsidiary, My E.G Commerce Sdn. Bhd. (MyEG Commerce) have abused their dominant position in the (...)

The Russian Competition Authority sanctions a manufacturer of wheel for shunting locomotives for abuse of domiance (Evraz)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
FAS found that “evraz” group violated the antimonopoly law* In 2013-2015 the cost-effectiveness of production of 1058-mm wheel for locomotives was unreasonably excessive The case was opened upon documents and information obtained by FAS in the course of analyzing the state of competition on the (...)

The German Competition launches a market inquiry on remedies proposed by German Olympic Sports Confederation and the International Olympic Committee suspected to abuse of their dominant position (DOSB / IOC)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Market test on commitments of DOSB and IOC* The Bundeskartellamt is currently conducting an administrative proceeding against the German Olympic Sports Confederation (Deutscher Olympischer Sportbund, DOSB) and the International Olympic Committee (IOC). The Bundeskartellamt suspects that the (...)

The Belgian Competition Authority imposes interim measures in the context of competitions of the Global Champions Tour (GCT)
Belgian Competition Authority (Brussels)
The Competition College of the BCA imposes interim measures in the context of competitions of the Global Champions Tour* The Competition College of the Belgian Competition Authority (BCA) has imposed on 20 December 2017 interim measures on the organisers of the Global Champions Tour (GCT), the (...)

The Hellenic Competition Authority opens an ex officio proceeding against a manufacturer of Greek traditional products suspected to cartel and abuse of dominance (Minerva)
Hellenic Competition Authority (Athens)
Ex Officio Investigation into alleged infringements of Articles 1 and 2 of Law 703/77, as well as Articles 101 and 102 TFEU, by “MINERVA S.A. Edible Oils Enterprises” (MINERVA) regarding its supply agreements of butter and margarine products both on the wholesale and retail level in Greece* (...)

The Italian Competition Authority applies the doctrine of essential facilities to a refusal to grant a copyright licence (Società Iniziative Editoriali)
Desogus Law Office (Cagliari)
Applying the doctrine of essential facilities to IP assets in the SIE case (decision no. 26312 of 21 December 2016, Case A503 Società Iniziative Editoriali/Servizi di rassegna stampa della Provincia di Trento- SIE), the Italian Competition Authority (ICA) found that a publisher infringed (...)

The French Competition Authority fines a pharmaceutical laboratory for having first prevented then restricted the development of generic versions of a drug (Janssen-Cilag / Johnson & Johnson)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence imposes a fine of 25 million euros on Janssen-Cilag laboratory and its parent company Johnson & Johnson for having first prevented then restricted the development of generic versions of Durogesic, its originator medicinal product.* Background Following a (...)

The German Competition Authority indicates in its preliminary assessment of a possible abuse of dominance case that data collection and use from third-party sources is abusive (Facebook)
Heinz & Zagrosek (Köln)
Bundeskartellamt sends preliminary assessment to Facebook* On December 19, 2017, the Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) published a press release on its preliminary assessment in the ongoing Facebook dominance probe, accompanied by a background paper (available in English here). The FCO considers (...)

The German Competition Authority finds by preliminary assessment that a social network company abused its dominant position by collecting and using data from third-party sources (Facebook)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Preliminary assessment in Facebook proceeding: Facebook’s collection and use of data from third-party sources is abusive* The Bundeskartellamt has informed the company Facebook in writing of its preliminary legal assessment in the abuse of dominance proceeding which the authority is conducting (...)

The Russian Competition Authority finds that a State-run undertaking abused its dominant position on the market of offering mooring in Moscow (Gormost)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
Moscow fas found that “gormost” violated the antimonopoly law* The “Gormost” Procedure for concluding contracts created discriminatory conditions and could have restricted competition Moscow OFAS found that “Gormost” violated the antimonopoly law in the part of abusing dominance of a natural (...)

The German Competition Authority prohibits exclusive contracts between a seller of tickets and event organisers and advance booking offices (CTS Eventim)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt prohibits exclusive contracts between CTS Eventim and event organisers and advance booking offices* The Bundeskartellamt has prohibited CTS Eventim from using exclusive contracts which it has concluded with organisers of live entertainment events and advance booking offices. (...)

The German Competition Authority terminates its administrative proceeding against a national sport association suspected of abuse of dominance (DFB - German Football Association)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
DFB eases conditions for purchase of tickets for World Cup 2018* The Bundeskartellamt has terminated its administrative proceeding against the German Football Association (DFB) which it had initiated on the suspicion that the association had abused its dominant position. Before this DFB had (...)

The EU Commission sends a statement of objections to a brewing company suspected to have abused of its dominance (AB InBev)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission sends Statement of Objections to AB InBev for preventing cheaper imports of beer into Belgium* The European Commission has informed AB InBev of its preliminary view that the company has abused its dominant position on the Belgian beer market, by hindering cheaper imports (...)

The EU Commission publishes a communication on Standard Essential Patents
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 29 November 2017, the European Commission published a communication titled “Setting out the EU approach to Standard Essential Patents” (the “Communication”) in which it seeks to o er guidance and recommendations in relation to the licensing, valuation and enforcement of Standard Essential (...)

The UK Competition Authority accuses a pharmaceutical company to abuse of its dominant position (Concordia)
UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) (London)
Drug company accused of abusing its position to overcharge the NHS* The CMA has provisionally found that Concordia abused its dominant position to overcharge the NHS by millions for an essential thyroid drug. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has been investigating how much the (...)

Mergers

The US Federal Trade Commission increases notification thresholds under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Act and Clayton Act Section 8
McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced revised thresholds for Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976 (HSR) pre-merger notifications on January 26, 2018. These increased thresholds will become effective in late February or early March. These new thresholds apply to any (...)

The US Federal Trade Commission announces the annual changes to the Hart-Scott-Rodino Act notification thresholds
White & Case (Washington)
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White & Case (Washington)
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White & Case (Washington)
On January 26, 2018, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced the annual changes to the Hart-Scott-Rodino (HSR) Act notification thresholds. The FTC is required by law to revise the jurisdictional thresholds annually, based on the change in gross national product. Accordingly, the 2018 (...)

The EU Commission refers back a merger to the Polish Competition Authority in the pork meat sector (Pini Polonia / Smithfield)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission refers the acquisition of Pini Polonia by Smithfield to the Polish competition authority* The European Commission has referred the proposed transaction between Smithfield Foods of the US and Pini Polonia of Poland to the Polish Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (...)

Advocate General Wahl excludes gun-jumping in a case involving a takeover in the auditing sector (Ernst & Young)
Gomez Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gomez Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gomez Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
Gun-jumping rules prevent companies, subject to the obligation to notify, from completing a merger or acquisition, in whole or in part, prior to obtaining the approval from the relevant Competition Authorities. In May 2014, Ernst & Young (EY) acquisition of KPMG’s Danish unit was approved (...)

The Polish Competition Authority fines a company for failure to provide information in a merger context (DOM Polska)
Polish Competition Authority (Warsaw)
Dom Polska - decision of the UOKiK* The DOM Polska company has failed to provide information on a contemplated concentration scheme as requested by the President of UOKiK. The concentration scheme involved the takeover of control over LOB by ASSA ABLOY Entrance Systems. The behaviour of the (...)

The Romanian Competition Authority fines two companies for implementing a merger before authorization (CRH Ciment / Comnord)
Romanian Competition Council (Bucharest)
The Competition Council has sanctioned 2 companies for implementing a concentration* The Competition Council applied fines of 3,056,314 lei (approx. € 655,904) to the companies CRH Ciment (România) SA and Comnord SA for the implementation of an economic concentration before its authorization by (...)

The French Competition Authority clears a merger subject to remedies in the sector of collection and recovery of non-hazardous office waste (La Poste / Suez)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Collection and recovery of non-hazardous office waste sector* In an unprecedented move, the Autorité de la concurrence closes a litigation procedure, and on the same day, clears a merger involving the same activity. The Autorité obtained commitments from La Poste regarding the promotion, (...)

The EU Commission clears a merger subject to remedies in the markets for passenger air travel (Lufthansa / Air Berlin)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission approves acquisition by Lufthansa of Air Berlin subsidiary LGW, subject to conditions* The European Commission has approved under the EU Merger Regulation Lufthansa’s proposed acquisition of certain Air Berlin assets, through the entity Luftfahrtgesellschaft Walter GmbH (...)

The UK Competition Authority clears a merger in the retail and wholesale market (Tesco / Booker)
UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) (London)
Tesco/Booker merger cleared after in-depth review* The CMA has concluded that Tesco’s purchase of Booker does not raise competition concerns. A group of independent Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) panel members has examined all submissions received since its provisional findings before (...)

The French Competition Authority clears a merger subject to remedies in the home decoration and gardening retail market (Bricorama / ITM Équipement de la Maison)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence has cleared, subject to several conditions, the acquisition of the Bricorama group by ITM Équipement de la Maison (Bricomarché, Brico Cash)* Parties to the transaction On 18 October 2017, ITM Équipement de la Maison, a subsidiary of ITM Entreprises, which notably (...)

The Finnish Competition Authority clears a merger subject to remedies on the retail and purchasing markets of the grocery sector (SOK / Stockmann Delicatessen)
Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (Helsinki)
FCCA approves the acquisition between SOK and Stockmann Delicatessen subject to conditions* Today, the Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (FCCA) approved the acquisition of Stockmann Group’s Delicatessen business by Suomen Osuuskauppojen Keskuskunta, SOK (The Central Finnish Cooperative (...)

The French Competition Authority clears a merger subject to remedies in the agricultural cooperatives sector (CAM / Terrena)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence clears, subject to commitments, the merger of Coopérative agricole des Agriculteurs de la Mayenne (CAM) with Terrena* Parties to the operation On 30 October 2017, the parties notified the Autorité de la concurrence of their intention to merge through a merger by (...)

The German Competition Authority clears a merger in the market of aircraft manufacturing (Airbus / Bombardier)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt clears merger between Airbus and Bombardier* The Bundeskartellamt has cleared the acquisition of C Series Aircraft Limited Partnership, Canada ("CSALP"), a subsidiary of Bombardier Inc. Montreal, Canada, by Airbus SE, Leiden, Netherlands. Andreas Mundt, President of the (...)

The Finnish Competition Authority clears a merger subject to remedies in the hotel accommodation market (Scandic / Restel)
Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (Helsinki)
The FCCA approves Scandic’s acquisition of Restel, with conditions* Today, the FCCA has approved the acquisition of Restel Hotellit Oy by Scandic Hotels Oy, with conditions. As a condition for the approval of the sale, the FCCA obliged Scandic to sell one hotel in Pori, Lahti and Kuopio to its (...)

The French Competition Authority opens an in-depth investigation concerning a merger in the market for the production and sale of ready meals (Financière Cofigeo / William Saurin)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence has initiated an in-depth examination of the planned acquisition by Financière Cofigeo of certain securities and assets of the Agripole group’s Ready Meals division (William Saurin, Panzani and Garbit)* On 12 June 2017, Financière Cofigeo notified the Autorité de la (...)

The EU General Court dismisses appeals against a Commission’s decision to open an in-depth merger investigation (HeidelbergCement / Schlenk Zement / Cemex Croatia)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 27 November 2017, the General Court (“GC”) dismissed appeals brought by HeidelbergCement and Schwenk Zement against the European Commission’s decision of 10 October 2016 to open an in-depth (Phase II) merger investigation into their acquisition – via a joint venture – of Cemex Croatia. In their (...)

The Russian Competition Authority clears the creation of a joint undertaking subject to remedies in the taxi market (Yandex / Uber)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
FAS cleared merger between Yandex.Taxi and Uber, subject to conditions* On November 24, 2017 FAS agreed on the application of the Yandex N.V., Uber International C.V. for conclusion of an agreement on the creation of joint enterprise, subject to conditions. The results of analysis of the (...)

The German Competition Authority prohibits a merger on the market of sale of tickets for live entertainment (CTS Eventim / Four Artists)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt prohibits merger between CTS Eventim and Four Artists* The Bundeskartellamt has prohibited the planned acquisition by CTS Eventim AG & Co. KGaA of the majority of shares in the companies belonging to Konzert- und Veranstaltungsagentur Four Artists - Four Artists Booking (...)

The Indian Government exempts Oil & Gas state owned enterprises from merger control
Chandhiok & Associates (New Delhi)
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Chandhiok & Associates (New Delhi)
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Chandhiok & Associates (New Delhi)
On 22 November 2017, the Government of India issued a notification exempting Central Public Sector Enterprises (CPSEs) operating in the Oil and Gas Sectors (O&G Exemption), from a mandatory pre-merger approval requirement under the Competition Act, 2002 (Competition Act) for a period of (...)

State Aid

The EU General Court upholds a Commission’s decision ordering the recovery of an illegal State aid (Brussels South Charleroi Airport)
Gomez Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gomez Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gomez Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
The General Court of the EU has dismissed the appeal filed by Brussels South Charleroi Airport (“BSCA”) against a 2014 Commission decision whereby Belgium was ordered to recover illegal State aid granted to BSCA. In its decision, the Commission found that a series of measures adopted by the (...)

Procedures

The French Competition Authority imposes for the first time a fine of 30 millions euros to a company for obstructing the investigation (Brenntag)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence fines Brenntag 30 million euros for obstructing the investigation* The Autorité today publishes a decision by which it fines the Brenntag SA (hereinafter « Brenntag ») and Brenntag AG companies for having infringed the provisions of V of article L. 464-2 of the (...)

The EU Commission publishes a Fact Sheet on Intellectual Property Rights Enforcement and a Communication setting out the EU’s approach to Standard Essential Patents
Simmons & Simmons (London)
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Simmons & Simmons (London)
The European Commission today published a Fact Sheet on Intellectual Property Rights Enforcement and a Communication setting out the EU’s approach to Standard Essential Patents (SEPs). In recognition of what it perceives as the strategic importance of SEPs and Europe’s need to grasp the enormous (...)

Regulatory

The EU Commission issues new requirements to ensure the independence of payment card schemes and processing entities (Interchange Fee Regulation)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Competition: Commission welcomes new rules that benefit consumers by promoting more competition in processing of card payments* The European Commission has issued new requirements that ensure independence of payment card schemes and processing entities, to enhance competition in the card (...)

The Croatian Competition Authority issues an opinion forcing a professional association to align its pricelists with competition rules (Croatian association of forestry engineers)
Croatian Competition Agency
Croatian association of forestry engineers must align its pricelists with competition rules* Based on the writing received from the Croatian Chamber of Forestry and Wood Technology Engineers the Croatian Competition Agency (CCA) issued its opinion on the proposed Ordinance on pricelists for (...)

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