Commitment Decisions

Anticompetitive practices

The Danish Competition Council accepts new commitments regarding the clubs’ joint sale of media rights for national league football (Superliga)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Danish Competition Council Accepts New Commitments regarding Danish Football Clubs’ Joint Sale of Media Rights* On 26 February 2014 the Danish Competition Council accepted new commitments offered by the Association of Danish League Clubs regarding the clubs’ joint sale of media rights to Danish (...)

The UK OFT accepts commitments from online travel agents enabling them and the hotels to offer discounts on rates for hotel rooms (Booking.com)
Stanford University - Stanford Law School
UK Office of Fair Trading closes investigation into hotel online booking practices On 31 January 2014, the UK Office of Fair Trading (“OFT”) accepted the commitments from online travel agents, Booking.com B.V. (“Booking.com”, and its ultimate parent company priceline.com Incorporated) and Expedia (...)

The Danish Competition Council accepts commitments concerning exchange of information that might facilitate anticompetitive practices in the constructions sector
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Competition Council accepts commitments from The Danish Construction Association regarding exchange of information agreement* On 18 December 2013 the Danish Competition Council (DCC) accepted commitments from the Danish Construction Association regarding concerns that an exchange of (...)

The US District Court for the Southern District of New York establishes collusion to eliminate retail price competition for e-books and imposes restrictions on deals with publishers for the next five years (Apple)
DLA Piper Weiss-Tessbach (Vienna)
U.S. District Court rules Apple colluded on E-Book Prices* On 10 July 2013 the District Court in Manhattan ruled in United States v. Apple Inc., et al that Apple conspired with five major publishers to raise prices on e-books. The publishers settled and denied any wrongdoing. However, the case (...)

The Danish Competition Council accepts commitments from a purchasing association for pharmacists in relation to decision to exclude a member (Uldum Apotek / A-apoteket)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Competition Council accepts commitments from Denmark’s largest purchasing association for pharmacists* On 26 June 2013 the Danish Competition Council accepted commitments from A-apoteket – a purchasing association for pharmacists – on the basis of concerns that a decision taken by the association (...)

The Canadian Court of Appeal dismisses the action for damages in a conspiracy claim against joint purchasers in the oil industry (Alberta/Husky Oil Operations)
Affleck Greene McMurtry
No pot of gold at the end of the Rainbow* A decision by joint operators of an oil field to use a single fluid hauler was not an unlawful conspiracy, the Alberta Court of Appeal held recently, overturning a 2011 decision that awarded about $8 million to the loser of a competitive bidding (...)

The EU Commission launches market test of the commitments offered by e-book publisher to reach a settlement in the EU investigation into e-book pricing (Penguin)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 19 April 2013, the European Commission launched a market test of the commitments offered by Penguin, aimed at reaching a settlement in the EU investigation into e-book pricing. In order to alleviate the Commission’s fears for collusion and higher prices in the e-book publishing sector, (...)

The Spanish Competition Commission renders legally binding commitments offered by a professional association in the market for expert reporting in occupational hazards (UICM)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
On 19 February 2013 the Spanish Competition Commission (“CNC”) adopted a resolution rendering legally binding the commitments offered by the Inter-Professional Union of the Community of Madrid (“UICM”) in order to alleviate the anti-competitive allegations raised against it. The CNC initiated its (...)

The Irish Competition Authority secures binding commitments in case of resale price maintenance in footwear products (FitFlop footwear distributor, Double Bay Enterprises)
European Commission (Brussels)
Ireland: Commitments in Case of Resale Price Maintenance in Footwear Products* In February 2013, the Competition Authority (the Authority) secured binding commitments from FitFlop footwear distributor, Double Bay Enterprises Limited, in relation to its policy of resale price maintenance (...)

The EU Commission renders legally binding commitments regarding competition concerns on markets for aluminium smelting equipment (Rio Tinto Alcan)
Stanford University - Stanford Law School
European Commission renders legally binding commitments on Rio Tinto Alcan* On 20 December 2012, the Commission issued a press release stating that it has made legally binding the commitments offered by Rio Tinto Alcan (“Alcan”) to address the Commission’s concerns that Alcan might have infringed (...)

The German Competition Authority declares legally binding commitments offered by airline company regarding specific issues with its data tracking methods (Lufthansa)
European Commission (Brussels)
Germany: Lufthansa changes anticompetitive Clauses in Corporate Client Programme* On 20 December 2012 the Bundeskartellamt (BKartA) declared commitments of Lufthansa binding regarding specific issues with Lufthansa’s data tracking methods. The proceedings against Lufthansa were triggered by (...)

The Irish Competition Authority obtains legally binding commitments against a distributor to cease resale price maintenance (BBS)
Queen’s University Belfast
1. Legal Background Among the augmentations of Ireland’s competition regime made by recent amendments to the Competition Act 2002 is section 14B. This new section of the Competition Act provides that the Competition Authority, after an investigation of anticompetitive practices by an (...)

The EU Commission finds that given the nature of the relevant product, concerted practices covering a substantial part of the EEA may affect the interstate trade (e-books)
Liege Competition and Innovation Institute
Sad but true* I love commitments decisions because they are a quick read. But I also hate dislike them because they leave the reader angry hungry for more. Some evidence: in the E-Books case, the effect on trade condition was deemed fulfilled under the simplest possible sort of analysis: (...)

The European Commission accepts commitments in e-books case (Simon & Schuster, Harper Collins, Hachette, Holtzbrinck and Apple)
European Commission (Brussels)
European Commission accepts Commitments in E-Books Case* On 12 December 2012, the European Commission (Commission) accepted formally binding commitments from four international publishers (Simon & Schusters (CBS Corp., USA), HarperCollins (News Corp., USA), Hachette Livre (Lagardère (...)

The Croatian Competition Authority accepts the commitments of the Croatian autoclub concerning emergency towing services (Hrvatski Autoklub)
University of Technology (Tallinn)
On 4 October 2012 the Croatian Competition Authority (AZTN) accepted the committments of the Croatian Autoclub (HAK) in relation to the non-competition clauses in the agreements for emergency technical assistance services and closed its investigation into the alleged anti-competitive practices (...)

The Romanian Competition Council addresses new developments on the joint selling of commercial rights for football broadcasting (Romanian Football Federation)
Kinstellar (Bucarest)
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OMV Petrom
Original case In 2011, an investigation launched on the national market of media rights over football competitions brought the first case in which the investigated parties proposed commitments based on the new guidelines on commitments adopted by the Romanian Competition Council (“RCC”) in the (...)

The Bulgarian Commission on Protection of Competition adopts commitment decision concerning wholesale fuel market (Lukoil, Nafteks Petrol, Rompetrol and OMV)
European Commission (Brussels)
Bulgaria: The Commission on Protection of Competition adopts Commitment Decision concerning Wholesale Fuel Market * On 26 July 2012, the Commission on Protection of Competition (CPC) adopted a commitment decision in the case of Lukoil Bulgaria, Nafteks Petrol and Rompetrol Bulgaria and OMV (...)

The EU Commission makes legally binding commitments offered by companies active in nuclear markets on post-JV non-compete and confidentiality obligations (Siemens / Areva)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
The European Commission announced, on 18 June 2012, that it had adopted a decision to make legally binding commitments offered by Siemens AG (“Siemens”) and Areva SA (“Areva”) to reduce the scope and duration of certain non-compete and confidentiality obligations imposed on Siemens further to (...)

The French Competition Authority fines three leading companies in dog and cat food sector (Nestlé, Mars, Colgate-Palmolive)
European Commission (Brussels)
France: The Autorité de la concurrence fines three leading Companies in Dog and Cat Food Sector * On 20 March 2012, the Autorité de la concurrence (the Autorité) fined the Nestlé, Mars Incorporated, Colgate-Palmolive Groups and their respective specialist subsidiaries Nestlé Purina Petcare France, (...)

The German Competition Authority accepts commitments offered by two sports leagues concerning the joint award of media rights (League Association, German Football League)
European Commission (Brussels)
Germany: Green Light for current Marketing Model of Football League Media Rights * On 17 April 2012, the award procedure for the media rights of the 1st and 2nd German football leagues has been concluded. On 12 January 2012, the Bundeskartellamt (BKartA) accepted the commitments offered by (...)

The French Competition Authority makes binding commitments proposed by leading retailer concerning its franchise agreement (Carrefour / Carrefour market)
Van Bael & Bellis
On 16 December 2011, the French Competition Authority made binding the commitments proposed by Carrefour concerning its Carrefour Market franchise agreement. In August 2010, Marcadet (a Carrefour franchisee) complained to the French Competition Authority concerning certain commercial (...)

An Italian Administrative Court sets aside the Italian Competition Authority’s decision to fine a payment card network company, 8 Italian banks and financial institutions for infringing art. 101 TFEU (MasterCard – I720 Carte di credito)
University Luiss Guido Carli - GRIF (Rome)
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University Luiss Guido Carli - GRIF (Rome)
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OECD - Competition Division (Paris)
Introduction On the 11th of July 2011 the Italian Regional Administrative Court of Latium (Tribunale Amministrativo Regionale per il Lazio – hereafter “IRAC”) upheld the appeal of Monte dei Paschi di Siena S.p.A. (hereafter MPS”) against the decision no. 21768 of the Italian Competition Authority (...)

The French Competition Authority makes commitments reducing the two main fees associated with payments and withdrawals binding (CB Bank Cards Group)
European Commission (Brussels)
France: The Autorité de la concurrence makes Commitments cutting MIFs on Payment Cards by 20% to 50% binding* On 7 July 2011, the Autorité de la concurrence (the Autorité) made commitments from the Groupement des Cartes Bancaires (the Groupement), which includes over 130 banks, binding whereby (...)

The French Competition Authority makes mandatory commitments proposed by an economic interest group to reduce the inter-bank fees applicable to transactions by payment cards (Groupement des Cartes Bancaires)
White & Case (Paris)
On July 7, 2011, the French Competition Authority (hereinafter the “Authority”) issued a decision whereby it accepts settlement of an investigation and makes mandatory the commitments proposed by “Groupement des Cartes Bancaires”,an Economic Interest Group which brings together more than 130 banks (...)

The Spanish Competition Commission closes with commitments a proceeding initiated against two companies for alleged restrictive practices in the printed advertising sector (Vocento, Godό)
Callol, Coca & Asociados
On 30 June 2011 the NCC has decided to close a formal proceeding opened ex officio against Corporación Vocento S.A.U. and Vocento, S.A. (VOCENTO) and Publipress Media, S.L.U. and Grupo Godó de Comunicaciones S.A. (GODÓ) for possible restrictive practices under Article 1 SCA. The practices (...)

The French Competition Authority accepts commitments in relation to exclusivity agreements in the multi-brand gift cards sector (Accentiv’Kadéos)
Hewlett Packard (Boulogne-Billancourt)
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Affinion International
In its decision N°11-D-08 dated 27 April 2011, the French Competition Authority (the «Competition Authority«) accepted the commitments offered by Accentiv’Kadéos in relation to exclusivity agreements between it and its partner brands in the multi-brand gift cards sector. Background On August 2009, (...)

The Polish President of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection imposes commitments to remedy RPM in a vertical hard core restrictions case concerning gardening products distribution (Scotts and its distributors)
Hogan Lovells (Warsaw)
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Hogan Lovells (Warsaw)
On 26 April 2011, the President of the Office for Competition and Consumers Protection (the «OCCP» or the «Office») issued a decision in which it found that Scotts Poland sp. z o.o. (the «Scotts» or the «Company»), a subsidiary of Scotts Miracle-Gro Company, applied a resale price maintenance clause in (...)

The Romanian Competition Authority accepts commitments of the national football federation in relation to the joint selling of the media rights (Federația Română de Fotbal / Liga Profesionistă de Fotbal din România)
University of Technology (Tallinn)
On 19 April 2011 the Romanian Competition Authority (CC) accepted the commitments proposed by the Romanian Football Federation (FRF) and, one of its members, the Romanian Professional Football League (LPF) in relation to the joint selling of the media rights and thus closed its investigation (...)

The French Competition Authority publishes market-tested commitments proposed by the French CB bank card association in order to resolve antitrust concerns on multilateral interchange fees (Groupement des Cartes Bancaires)
European Commission (Brussels)
France: The Autorité de la Concurrence market-tests Commitments on MIFs, including on Debit and Credit Cards* Following a complaint made by two professional associations of merchants and retailers against ultilateral interchange fees (MIFs)used in the various payment systems in France, the (...)

The Italian Competition Authority accepts and makes binding commitments to avoid further proceedings into an alleged anticompetitive practice in the paper waste and raw paper material sector (COMIECO)
University of Bologna
The Italian Competition Authority (hereafter Agcm) has accepted and made binding commitments offered by the National Consortium established under Italian private law to rationalize, organize and promote the recovery and recycling of cellulose-based packaging(hereafter “COMIECO”). The Agcm stated (...)

The Italian Competition Authority closes an investigation into the national consortium for the recovery and recycling of cellulose-based packaging for alleged infringement of Art. 101 TFEU accepting the commitments proposed to fix antitrust concerns (COMIECO)
European Commission (Brussels)
Italy: The Italian Competition Authority (ICA) accepts Commitments and closes Investigation regarding Waste Paper Consortium COMIECO* On 16 March 2011, the Italian Competition Authority (ICA) closed proceedings based on an alleged violation of Article 101 TFEU against COMIECO, a consortium of (...)

The UK OFT negotiates an agreement limiting the exchange of pricing data among car insurers (Insurers Ageas Insurance, Aviva, AXA Insurance UK, Liverpool Victoria Friendly Society, RBS Insurance Group Limited, Royal Sun Alliance and Zurich Insurance)
Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld (Washington)
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Bona Law (New York)
This article is the winner for business category, general antitrust section of the 2012 Antitrust Writing Awards. Click here to read more about the Antitrust Writing Awards. Summary Britain’s Office of Fair Trading (the UK consumer and competition authority) has negotiated an agreement that (...)

The UK OFT launches a consultation on its intention to accept binding commitments to modify a data exchange tool used by motor insurers
Vinge (Stockholm)
The European Commission’s revised Guidelines on Horizontal Cooperation have met with mixed reactions from practitioners and businesses, especially insofar as information exchange is concerned. However, a decision of the UK Office of Fair Trading (“OFT”) applying the new Guidelines gives a (...)

The Spanish Competition Commission closes monitoring of termination by commitments agreement in interchange fees for transactions by debit and credit cards case (SERVIRED, SISTEMA 4B and EURO 6000)
European Commission (Brussels)
* Article published in ECN Brief 01/2011. The original title of this article appears below the e-Competitions title. Please note that the ECN is not the actual "author" of this case summary, but the mere source. As mentioned by the ECN : "The information provided by the ECN Brief is for (...)

The Danish Competition Council adopts commitment decision to remove a prohibition against resale of ferry tickets for freight (Scandlines)
European Commission (Brussels)
Denmark: Scandlines - Commitments to remove a Prohibition against Resale of Ferry Tickets for Freight On 27 October 2010, the Competition Council adopted a decision which renders legally binding the commitments offered by Scandlines to remove a prohibition against the resale of ferry tickets (...)

The Italian Antitrust Authority accepts commitments submitted by the leading auction company following an investigation for unfair practice (Sotheby’s)
Codacons
The Italian branch of Sotheby’s, Sotheby’s S.r.l. (hereninafter SHT), sells and buys antiques, arts and collection items during public auctions. The Italian Antitrust Authority (hereinafter ICA), started investigation in March 2010, because was reported that SHT provided incomplete and deceiving (...)

The German Cartel Office accepts commitments from energy suppliers to renounce resale clauses prohibitions (RWE, EWE, RheinEnergie, Wingas, N-Ergie, Stadtwerke Hannover, Erdgas Muenster, Stadtwerke Leipzig, SWM, Entega, Stadtwerke Kiel, Koethen Energie)
European Commission (Brussels)
Germany: Energy Suppliers agree to abandon Resale Prohibitions The Bundeskartellamt has concluded on 7 July 2010 most of its proceedings against gas and electricity suppliers on account of their imposing inadmissible resale bans. Twelve of the major energy suppliers in Germany (RWE, EWE, (...)

The European Commission consults on commitments in the financial sector (Visa MIF)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
The European Commission has recently consulted on commitments offered by Visa Europe in the context of the Commission’s ongoing investigation into multilateral interchange fees (“MIF”). MIFs are charged by a cardholder’s bank (the “issuing bank”) to a merchant’s bank (the “acquiring bank”) for each (...)

The European Commission investigates the remedies proposed by airlines in the context of envisaged cooperation relating to transatlantic flights (British Airways, American Airlines, Iberia)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
The European Commission has recently confirmed that it is investigating the sufficiency of remedies proposed by British Airways, American Airlines and Iberia in the context of its review of the compatibility of the airlines’ envisaged cooperation relating to transatlantic flights with Article (...)

The Italian Competition Authority accepts commitments submitted by an association of undertakings in order to cease possible violation of Art. 101 TFUE regarding professional fees (Council of psychologists)
Codacons
The "Consiglio Nazionale dell’Ordiene degli Psicologi" ("CNOP") is the organ which represents the Council of psychologists at national level: it approves the professional ethics code, it manages the internal organization, compiles the balance sheets, and ensures the respect of the legislation, (...)

The French Competition Authority accepts the commitments to waive distribution exclusivity on mobile telephones ("i-Phone" Apple - Orange)
Norton Rose Fulbright (Paris)
On 11 January 2010, the French Competition Authority handed down its first decision of 2010, accepting the commitments undertaken by Apple and Orange to waive any distribution exclusivity on current and future iPhones models. Such Commitment Decision, taken pursuant to Article L. 464-2 I of (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Authority closes investigation in retail trade of automobiles and technical maintenance sector following commitments (Honda Motor Europe)
European Commission (Brussels)
Lithuania: The Competition Council (CC) closes Investigation in Retail Trade of Automobiles and Technical Maintenance Sector following Commitments On 24 December 2009, the Lithuanian Competition Council terminated its investigation concerning the compliance of the practices of vehicle traders (...)

A French Court of Appeal makes a reference for a preliminary ruling to the ECJ on whether a general and absolute ban on Internet sales by approved distributors does constitute a “hardcore restriction” on competition by object within the meaning of Art. 81.1 EC (Pierre Fabre Dermo-Cosmétique)
Norton Rose Fulbright (Paris)
In a judgment dated 29 October 2009, the French Court of Appeal made a reference for a preliminary ruling under article 234 of the Treaty establishing the European Community (the “EC Treaty”), whereby the ECJ was asked to answer “the question whether a general and absolute ban on Internet sales to (...)

The French Competition Authority accepts to close the proceedings conditional to the cease of long-term exclusive agreements (Cybervitrine / Photomaton)
Norton Rose Fulbright (Paris)
In a decision dated 26 October 2009, the French Competition Authority decided, pursuant to Article L. 464-2 I of the French commercial code, to close the proceedings opened against the Photomaton Company, in exchange of certain commitments regarding the long-term exclusive agreements it had (...)

The European Commission accepts commitments proposed by UK Association in the ship classification market (International Association of Classification Societies)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
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European Commission - DG DEVCO
"Commitment decision in the ship classification case: Paving the way for more competition"* I. Introduction On 14 October 2009, the Commission adopted a decision under Article 9(1) of Regulation 1/2003 that renders legally binding commitments offered by the International Association of (...)

The Hungarian competition authority accepts commitments from the lawyer’s Bar on registration fees (Békés Megyei Ügyvédi Kamara)
Hungarian Competition Law Research Centre
The Hungarian competition authority, the Gazdasági Versenyhivatal (GVH) accepted commitments from the lawyer’s Bar of Békés Megye (Békés Megyei Ügyvédi Kamara; further on: BMÜK). The GVH initiated the investigation on 7 May 2007, because it was thought that the BMÜK with the imposition of procedural (...)

The Moldovan Competition Authority issues a conditional exemption of cooperation agreement between two leading sugar producers (Südzucker Moldova / Gold Crown)
University of Technology (Tallinn)
On 10 September 2009 Moldovan Competition Authority (ANPC) approved a cooperation agreement concluded between two leading sugar producers, Südzucker Moldova S.A. (Südzucker) and Gold Crown S.R.L. (Gold Crown), subject to conditions. Within the agriculture-oriented national economy of Moldova (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority fines major fuel suppliers for resale price maintenance and accepts commitments relating to long-term contracts and non-compete clauses (Repsol / CEPSA / BP)
Van Bael & Bellis
According to a press release of 30 July 2009, the Spanish Competition Authority imposed fines totalling € 7.9 million on REPSOL, CEPSA and BP (the three main suppliers of fuel in Spain) for violating the competition rules by engaging in resale price maintenance in their relations with (...)

The Finnish Competition Authority imposes commitments on the pricing of ATM withdrawals by three banks which own the dominant ATM operator (Norde Bank / OP Bank / Sampo Bank)
Roschier (Helsinki)
The Finnish Competition Authority (“FCA”) has on 18 June 2009 imposed binding commitments on Nordea Bank Finland Plc (“Nordea”), OP-Pohjola Group (“OP”) and Sampo Bank Plc (“Sampo”) (jointly “Banks”) concerning their pricing of ATM withdrawals. The Banks own Automatia Pankkiautomaatit Oy (“Automatia”), (...)

The Italian Competition Authority closes investigation on common interbank charges and MAV payment services by accepting commitments (Associazione Bancaria Italiana)
Desogus Law Office (Cagliari)
By a recent decision, the Italian Competition Authority (ICA) has closed an investigation into two anticompetitive agreements affecting the banking market for payment services by accepting and making binding a set of commitments presented by the parties upon the basis of Art. 14-ter of the Act (...)

The French NCA fines several temping agencies nearly € 100 M, but grants significant reductions for certain parties who enter into innovative commitments (Adecco, Manpower, VediorBis)
Hewlett Packard (Boulogne-Billancourt)
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Ginestié Magellan Paley-Vincent
On 2 February 2009, the French Competition Council ("the Council") fined several agencies active in the temporary employment sector in France (Adecco, Adia, Manpower and VediorBis - "the Companies") for concerted practices. Context Temping enables businesses desiring more flexibility to use (...)

The Polish Competition Authority condemns a resale price maintenance agreement and rejects a demand for a commitment decision (Koral and Zabka Polska)
French National Research Agency (ANR)
The present decision n° RKT-107/2008 of 31 December 2008 relates to some provisions of the cooperation agreement signed by one of the biggest ice-cream manufacturers in Poland, i.e., Przedsiêbiorstwo Produkcji Lodów “KORAL” - Józef Koral spólka jawna (hereafter: KORAL) and a chain of convenience (...)

The French Competition Authority accepts commitments offered as part of the negotiated settlement procedure in a minimum retail price maintenance case (Cie Financière et de Participation Roullier)
Moskvina Law, PLLC
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Darrois Villey Maillot Brochier
Background Compagnie Financière et de Participation Roullier (“CFPR”) mainly produces agricultural supplies, and is also active in agrochemicals and food production. CFPR produces licking salt blocks (“LSB”) for farm animals, which are particularly profitable products. CFPR’s clients are (...)

The European Commission prohibits European collecting societies from restricting competition as regards the conditions for the management and licensing of authors’ public performance rights for musical works (CISAC)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
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European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"The CISAC decision - creating competition between collecting societies for music rights"* I. Introduction On 16 July 2008 the European Commission adopted a decision prohibiting 24 European collecting societies from restricting competition as regards the conditions for the management and (...)

The Polish NCA issues its first commitment decision in a cartel case (Xella Polska and its distributors)
Hogan Lovells (Warsaw)
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PKN Orlen
On 7 July 2008, the President of the Office for Competition and Consumers’ Protection (‘the OCCP’ or “the Office’) confirmed that Xella Polska Sp. z o.o., a part of the Franz Haniel & Cie Gmbh capital group (“Xella Polska") and its 10 distributors had infringed the competition law rules by (...)

The Polish antitrust authority concludes an investigation into a price-fixing agreement in the construction sector with a commitment decision and no fine (Xella Poland)
Dentons (Warsaw)
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Wierzbowski Eversheds (Warsaw)
On February 1, 2007, Xella Polska Sp. z o.o. («Xella») signed a number of contracts with its distributors regulating the conditions of supply of wall-building materials by Xella. Each of the contracts included a clause forbidding the distributor from reselling Xella‘s products at a price lower (...)

The Hungarian Competition Authority accepts commitments from brokers in a cartel investigation (Budapest Stock Exchange)
Van Bael & Bellis
In two orders of 20 March and 21 May 2008, the Hungarian Competition Authority (the “GVH”) ended its investigation into an alleged price coordination by brokers at the Budapest Stock Exchange (the “BÉT”). The first order ended the investigation, due to the lack of evidence, into an alleged fixing (...)

The Italian Competition Authority closes the investigations for violations of Art. 81 and 82 EC in the equestrian sports market following commitments proposed by a sport federation (Federazione Italiana Sport Equestri)
Ashurst
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Legance - Studio Legale Associato
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Banca d’Italia (Italian Central Bank)
Background On 15 May 2008, the Italian Competition Authority (Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato) closed the investigation launched in July 2007 for possible violations of Article 81 and/or 82 EC by the Italian Equestrian Sports Federation (Federazione Italiana Sport Equestri) (...)

The Hungarian Competition Council accepts commitments to reduce the duration of non-compete obligations in beer supply agreements (Borsodi Sörgyár)
Ernst & Young
The Hungarian Competition Council terminates an investigation concerning beer supply agreements by adopting a commitment decision and making the commitments of a beer producer binding, pursuant to which the duration of non-compete obligations is to be reduced to five years. The background of (...)

The French Competition Council accepts commitments aiming at providing access to a computer program in the press distribution sector (NMPP)
Moskvina Law, PLLC
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Darrois Villey Maillot Brochier
Background On 8 August 2003, Messageries Lyonnaises de Presse (MLP) filed a complaint with the French Competition Council (Council) regarding anticompetitive conduct of NMPP and SAEM-TP. The present decision addresses only NMPP’s alleged attempt to evict MLP from the market by refusing to grant (...)

The Czech Competition Authority publishes guidelines on alternative resolution of certain competition issues
Havel, Holasek & Partners (Prague)
I. Introduction In 2004, the first amendment to the Czech Competition Act was adopted which introduced into the national competition law a new mechanism designed for alternative resolution of certain competition disputes. By virtue of this amendment, the Office for the Protection of (...)

The Paris Court of Appeal upholds an NCA’s decision acceptating commitments in its first decision on commitments procedure (Bijourama/Festina France)
White & Case (Paris)
Commitments from Festina France on its distribution agreements, accepted by the French Competition Council (Conseil de la concurrence) in a decision of 24 July 2006, are the first ones to be submitted to the Paris Court of Appeal. The Competition Council was seized by Bijourama, a jewel and (...)

The European Commission renders legally binding commitments on four car manufacturers to give independent repairers proper access to repair information (DaimlerChrysler, Fiat, Toyota and General Motors)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
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European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"Four decisions bind DaimlerChrysler, Fiat, Toyota and General Motors to commitments to give independent repairers proper access to repair information"* I. Introduction: Importance of these decisions for consumers It is commonly recognised that there is a widespread problem in the motor (...)

A Spanish Court holds that it is not bound by an EC Commission decision under Art. 9 of EC Reg. 1/2003 (Carburantes Costa de la Luz v Repsol)
European Court of Justice (Luxembourg)
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Garrigues
Article 9 of Council Regulation (EC) n° 1/2003, of 16 December 2002, on the implementation of the rules on competition laid down in Articles 81 and 82 of the Treaty (OJEC L 1, 4 January 2003, pp. 1-25) (“Article 9”) is one of the major new features of the new EC competition rules adopted in May (...)

The Italian Competition Authority finds that the circular of a bank association, interpreting rules on unilateral unfavourable changes of banking contractual conditions, violates Art. 81 EC (Associazione Bancaria Italiana)
Ashurst
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Legance - Studio Legale Associato
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Banca d’Italia (Italian Central Bank)
Background ABI is a non-profit association to which nearly all Italian banks belong. In August 2006, the Italian Banking Law (Legislative Decree n° 385/1993) was amended by Law n° 248/2006. Art. 10 of Law n° 248/2006, which lays down provisions that banks have to respect when changing (...)

The Italian Competition Authority closes investigations in the market of veterinary services for alleged breach of Art. 81 EC by accepting commitments relating to minimum fares and health advertising (Ordine dei medici veterinari di Torino)
Linklaters (Milan)
Italian Competition Authority (Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato “AGCM”), 21 February 2007, Case 1668, Ordine dei medici veterinari di Torino, Provvedimento n°16500, Chiusura istruttoria ; Bollettino n° 8/2007, 12 March 2007 On 24 May 2006, the Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e (...)

The UK Competition Commission imposes inter alia price control to a major operator in the printed classified directories market (Yell)
RBB Economics (London)
On 21 December 2006, the UK’s Competition Commission published the results of its market investigation on the supply of printed classified directory advertising services (CDAS). In its report, the CC found that Yell, the largest supplier, had market power. This finding was based primarily on (...)

The French Competition Council agrees to commitments from Hi-Fi and Home Cinema equipment suppliers in order to allow their selective distributors to carry out online selling (Hi-Fi/Home Cinema)
Simmons & Simmons (Paris)
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Hewlett Packard (Boulogne-Billancourt)
On 5 October 2006, the Conseil de la concurrence (French Competition Council) issued a decision in which it accepted to withdraw the litigation proceedings after three of the main companies active in the Hi-fi and home cinema equipment sector (Bose, Focal JM Lab and Triangle) agreed to (...)

The French Competition Council accepts commitments to modify selective distribution agreements as regards access to the network and advertising on the Internet (Festina)
AptarGroup
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SNCF Mobilités
The Bijourama Company is specialized in the sale of time pieces, jewellery and silversmith’s pieces exclusively on the internet. Bijourama submitted a referral to the French Competition Council on October 13th, 2005. The company complained about the refusal of Festina France (a subsidiary of the (...)

The European Commission renders legally binding commitments offered by a company active in the fuel distribution in Spain removing concerns of market foreclosure (REPSOL)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"REPSOL: Opening up the fuel distribution system in Spain"* Introduction On 12 April 2006, the Commission adopted a decision based on Article 9 of Regulation (EC) 1/2003 addressed to the largest petrol supplier in Spain, REPSOL Commercial de Productos Petroliferos (‘REPSOL‘), making commitments (...)

The Czech Office for the Protection of Competition exempts an individual beer supply agreement containing a minimum purchase obligation in favour of the dominant operator (Plzensky Prazdroj)
University Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris)
In this decision the national competition authority, the Czeh Office for the Protection of Competition (hereafter the “Office”) had a new opportunity to assess the validity of a vertical agreement concluded between the largest Czech brewer, Plzensky Prazdroj, a.s., and its distributors. The (...)

The Danish Competition Council clears a beer standard distribution agreements in the gastronomic sector subject to commitments alleviating the exclusivity effects of the agreement on the basis of Art. 81/82 EC (Carlsberg)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
On 26 October 2005 the Danish Competition Council granted clearance subject to commitments to Carlsberg’s supply agreements with the gastronomic sector. The Danish Competition Authority was concerned that the degree to which Carlsberg was binding its retailers might be in conflict with Articles (...)

The European Commission adopts its first commitment decision pursuant to Article 9 of Regulation 1/2003 concerning joint selling of German football media rights (Bundesliga)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"Joint selling of Bundesliga media rights — first Commission decision pursuant to Article 9 of Regulation 1/2003"* Introduction On 19 January 2005 the Commission adopted the first commitment decision pursuant to Article 9 of Regulation 1/2003. In case COMP/C-2/37.214 — Joint selling of the (...)

The European Commission approves partnership between British and Belgium airlines companies (British Airways/SN Brussels Airlines)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"Commission approves partnership between British Airways and SN Brussels Airlines"* Procedure On 25 July 2002, British Airways (BA) and SN Brussels Airlines (SN) notified to the Commission a number of co-operation agreements requesting an exemption under Article 81 (3) of the Treaty. These (...)

The European Commission closes investigation into two transatlantic aviation alliances (Lufthansa/SAS/United Airlines and KLM/NorthWest)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"Commission closes investigation into Lufthansa/SAS/United Airlines and KLM/NorthWest alliances"* I. Introduction On 28 October 2002 the European Commission decided to close its investigations under Article 85 (ex 89) of the Treaty into two transatlantic aviation alliances, that is the (...)

The European Commission grants an exemption on the basis of art. 81(3) of the EC Treaty concerning a cooperation agreement in the air transport sector (Lufthansa/Austrian Airlines)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"Aviation: Combining network synergies and competition — the Commission’s approval of the LH-AuA Alliance"* 1. Introduction The liberalisation of the European air transport market during the 1990s has triggered a process of consolidation in the European airline industry. Apart from mergers, (...)

The European Commission ends proceedings regarding German book price fixing agreements following acceptance of commitment on cross-border sales (Sammelrevers)
European Court of Justice (Luxembourg)
,
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"Commission ends competition proceedings regarding German book price fixing agreements following acceptance of an undertaking on cross-border sales"* Introduction The Commission has been dealing with the system of fixed book prices in Germany and Austria since its first notification in 1993 (...)

The European Commission persuades leading manufacturer of coffee machines to implement an international guarantee for its products addressing the issue of territorial restrictions (Saeco)
European Commission - DG JUST
"The Commission persuades Saeco to implement an international guarantee for its products and closes the complaint file"* The Commission has addressed the problem of territorial restrictions of guarantees offered by manufacturers on many occasions and has always insisted that, where a (...)

The European Commission approves an agreement to improve energy efficiency of washing machines (CECED)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"Commission approves an agreement to improve energy efficiency of washing machines"* On 24 January 2000, the Commission adopted an exemption decision regarding an agreement notified by the European Council of Domestic Appliance Manufacturers (CECED). The agreement gathers the principal (...)

Competition law regime and policy in Italy: An overview
Rucellai & Raffaelli
,
Sky
I. Italian antitrust law Competition Law in Italy is set out by Law n° 287 of 10 October 1990 (hereinafter also the “Law”), which regulates restrictive practices, abuses of dominant positions and concentrations, in a manner substantially identical to the European regulation. 1. Restrictive (...)

The Austrian Supreme Court confirms that a cooperation agreement in the savings bank sector only partly fulfils the criteria of Art. 81.3 EC and, in a separate decision, that one of the cooperation cases constitutes a concentration (Erste Bank)
Reidlinger Schatzmann Rechtsanwälte
,
Bpv Hügel (Vienna)
As reported previously, in a decision of 13 June 2006 the Austrian Cartel Court had found that the cooperation agreements concluded between the majority of players in the Austrian savings banks sector violated Article 81(1) EC, but was partly exempt under Article 81(3) EC (See Axel Reidlinger (...)

Dominance

The EU Commission approves commitments concerning certain standard essential patents relating to the European Telecommunications Standardisation Institute’s 3G UMTS standard (Samsung Electronics)
Stanford University - Stanford Law School
European Commission makes commitments offered by Samsung Electronics legally binding* On 29 April 2014, the European Commission European issued a decision (see also the related press release) which made legally binding the commitments offered by Samsung Electronics (“Samsung”) in relation to (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Council concludes an important investigation into the suspected abuse of dominance in the sector for road transportation (LINAVA)
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
Competition Council’s investigation encourages the Association LINAVA* The Competition Council (the KT) terminated the investigation into the actions by the Lithuanian National Road Carriers Association LINAVA (the Association). Allegedly, the Associations had breached Article 7 of the Law on (...)

The EU Commission obtains new proposal on commitments in the context of an ongoing antitrust investigation as regards online search and search advertising (Google)
Stanford University - Stanford Law School
Improved Google commitments (closer to) getting the thumbs up from the European Commission* On 5 February 2014, the European Commission issued a press release and a memo concerning the improved commitments proposed by Google (the commitments were made public by Google itself). At a press (...)

The Albanian Competition Authority asks to telecoms regulatory body and mobile operator for market adjustment without imposing fine and requiring commitments in a case of alleged abuse of dominance in the mobile telephony market (Vodafone Albania)
Albanian Competition Authority
Market playing rules can be compared to those of a soccer match in the sense that every wrong interference from a player worries the opponent but the foul punishment depends on the referee (in the case of competition the Antitrust body). The referee can decide whether not to punish at all, give (...)

The Danish Competition Council accepts commitments from domestic telecom company referring to margin squeeze practices (TDC)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
The Danish Competition Council Accepts Commitments from Denmark’s Largest Broadband Provider* On 18 December 2013 the Danish Competition Council accepted commitments from the Danish telecom-incumbent TDC A/S on the basis of concerns that TDC A/S had potentially abused its dominant position on (...)

The French Competition Authority accepts commitments from horse betting company consisting in the separation of its on-line and off-line horse betting activities to settle a case for potential abuse of a dominant position (PMU)
Simmons & Simmons (Paris)
The commitments proposed by the PMU follow a formal complaint lodged by a competing online horse betting company, Betclic, on January 2012, to the French Competition Authority. In its compliant, Betclic alleged that PMU was abusing its legal monopoly on the French off-line horse betting market (...)

The French Competition Authority launches a public consultation on commitments received in by a major operator in online gambling sector (PMU)
University Dublin College (UCD)
The French Competition Authority launched a public consultation on commitments it received from an operator in a dominant position on the online gambling market to split its online betting activities from those of its shop-betting network. Following a complaint from the Betclic Everest Group (...)

The European Commission market tests commitments proposed by German railway incumbent concerning pricing system for traction current in Germany (Deutsche Bahn)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 15 August 2013, the European Commission published a series of commitments proposed by the German railway incumbent Deutsche Bahn (“DB”) to resolve an investigation into its pricing system in Germany for the electricity used to power locomotives (known as “traction current”). In a press (...)

The Romanian Competition Council opens a public consultation in respect of the commitments undertaken by telecom operators regarding the mobile termination rates (Orange, Vodafone, Cosmote and Digi Mobil)
Mircea & Partners (Bucharest)
The Romanian Competition Council starts a market test in respect of commitments regarding the mobile termination rates* The Romanian Competition Council (RCC) launched on 13 August 2013, the market test of the commitments proposed by the Romanian mobile network operators - Orange, Vodafone, (...)

The European Commission accepts commitments offered by the Czech electricity incumbent to resolve competition concerns (CEZ)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 10 April 2013, the European Commission announced that it has accepted a set of commitments offered by CEZ, the Czech electricity incumbent, in July 2012 to resolve concerns regarding an alleged infringement of Article 102 TFEU. In particular, the Commission had reached the preliminary (...)

The European Commission fines one compagny €561 Million for breach of commitments (Microsoft)
European Commission (Brussels)
,
Jones Day (Brussels)
,
Jones Day (Brussels)
The European Commission has imposed an unprecedented €561 million ($730 million) fine on Microsoft, finding it broke its pledge to offer consumers a choice of how they access the Internet, rather than defaulting to Microsoft’s Explorer browser. This is the first time a company has been fined for (...)

The European Commission imposes a fine for non-compliance with browser choice commitments (Microsoft)
European Commission (Brussels)
European Commission: Microsoft fined for Non-Compliance with Browser Choice Commitments* On 6 March 2013, the European Commission (the Commission) imposed a fine on Microsoft for failing to comply with binding commitments. According to those commitments, Microsoft had to display to Windows (...)

The Lithuanian Supreme Administrative Court declares that the Competition Council has to perform new evaluation of commitments since its decision lacked motives and was inconsistent (TEO / Viasat)
Law firm of Raimundas Moisejevas (Vilnius)
Background On 22 November 2011, the Lithuanian Competition Council passed resolution on termination of investigation proceedings concerning conformity of Viasat World Limited and Viasat AS actions to the Article 9 of the Competition law. The present article of the Competition law prohibited (...)

The Italian Supreme Administrative Court upholds the NCA’s decision fining leader in construction markets for abuse of a dominant position on the market for plasterboard (Saint Gobain)
Covington & Burling (Brussels)
,
University Bocconi
With its judgment of 12 February 2013, the Italian Supreme Administrative Court (Consiglio di Stato) upheld the judgment of the Italian Administrative Court of First Instance (TAR Lazio) confirming the 2010 decision of the Italian Competition Authority (ICA) fining Saint Gobain Ppc Italia (...)

The US Federal Trade Commission closes its investigation and approves the voluntary commitment of an Internet search engine (Google)
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Washington)
,
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Palo Alto)
,
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (New York)
Thoughts On Google’s FTC Settlement Law360, New York (January 04, 2013, 4:42 PM ET) — On Jan. 3, 2013, the Federal Trade Commission ended its highly publicized and wide-ranging investigation into Google Inc.’s business practices with an enforcement action that has been described by some as a (...)

The French Competition Authority renders legally binding some commitments offered to solve competition concerns raised in the distribution of insurance products to golfers (Eurogolf / Fédération Française de Golf)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Press Release published on the official website of the French Competition Authority. The Autorité de la concurrence makes the commitments proposed by the ’Fédération Française de Golf’ mandatory. Golf players (or licensees) may take out insurance of their choice, which may differ from that offered (...)

The EU Commission renders legally binding commitments concerning the use of RICs for data sourced competitors (Thomson Reuters)
Stanford University - Stanford Law School
European Commission accepts commitments from Thomson Reuters* On 20 December 2012, the Commission issued a press release stating that it has made legally binding the commitments offered by Thomson Reuters to address the Commission’s concerns that Thomson Reuters might have abused its dominant (...)

The EU Commission adopts decision rendering international news media agency’s commitments legally binding (Thomson Reuters)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 20 December 2012, the Commission announced that it had adopted a decision that renders legally binding the commitments offered by Thomson Reuters to create a new licence ("ERL") allowing customers, for a monthly fee, to use Reuters Instrument Codes (“RICs”) for data sourced from Thomson (...)

The Romanian Competition Authority accepts behavioural commitments of a central securities depository and closes its investigation into the alleged abuse of dominant position (SC Depozitarul Central SA)
University of Technology (Tallinn)
On 11 December 2012 the Romanian Competition Authority (CC) concluded its investigation into the alleged abuse of dominant position on the market for the services rendered by the central securities depository by accepting a series of behavioral committments related to the pricing of the (...)

The EU Commission sends SOs to software company regarding failure to comply with commitments relating to web browsers and identifies additional issues relating to release of new software (Microsoft)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 24 October 2012, the European Commission announced that it sent a Statement of Objections (“SO”) to Microsoft informing the company of the Commission’s preliminary view that Microsoft failed to comply with its commitments designed to enable users to more easily choose their preferred web (...)

The French Competition Authority issues a first commitment decision concerning competition concerns in the Internet connectivity market (France Telecom, Cogent)
European Commission (Brussels)
France: First Commitment Decision related to Internet Neutrality issued by the Autorité de la concurrence* On 20 September 2012, the Autorité de la concurrence (the Autorité) issued for the first time a commitment decision concerning competition concerns relating to certain restrictions allegedly (...)

The Romanian Competition Council closes investigation on abuse of dominant position on the local market of natural gas installations planning and execution accepting commitments undertaken by the monopolist (PROGAZ P&D)
Grigorescu Ştefănică
Romania: The Romanian Competition Council accepted the commitments undertaken by PROGAZ P&D SA* The Romanian Competition Council (“RCC”) accepted the commitments undertaken by PROGAZ P&D SA in view of relieving the concerns regarding infringement of the antitrust rules by abuse of a (...)

The European Commission opens proceedings to investigate whether Russian producer and supplier of natural gas has abused its dominant position in central and eastern European gas markets (Gazprom)
U.S. Customs and Border Protection
With the creation of the European Coal and Steel Community in 1951, Europe took its first steps towards a unification that would create a single continental entity and major player in world politics. Now, over sixty years later, much progress has been made but the end result is that the dream (...)

The EU Commission opens proceedings against a Russian producer and supplier of natural gas concerning alleged abuse of dominance (Gazprom)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 4 September 2012, the European Commission announced that it has opened formal proceedings against Gazprom, the Russian producer and supplier of natural gas, to investigate whether Gazprom has abused its dominant market position in upstream gas supply markets in Central and Eastern (...)

The EU Commission publishes commitments offered by Canadian aluminum manufacturer to resolve tying allegations (Alcan)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 10 August 2012, the Commission published in the Official Journal commitments offered by Alcan to address the Commission’s investigation of alleged tying practices by that company. According to the Commission, its preliminary assessment indicates that Alcan has a dominant position in (...)

The EU Commission opens proceedings against US software company to investigate possible non-compliance with browser choice commitments (Microsoft)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 17 July 2012, the Commission announced that it had opened proceedings against Microsoft in order to investigate whether the company has failed to comply with its 2009 commitments to offer users a choice screen that provides another means of allowing users to choose their preferred web (...)

The EU Commission publishes commitments from Czech energy company to resolve alleged infringements on the market for the generation and wholesale supply of electricity (CEZ)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 10 July 2012, the Commission published in the Official Journal proposed commitments by Czech energy company CEZ to resolve alleged abuses of a dominant position under Article 9 of Regulation 1/2003. The move follows from dawn raids in November 2009 and the official opening of an (...)

The Hellenic Competition Commission imposes on Greek leading movie producer and distributor the obligation to supply movies to its economically dependent competitor (Odeon, Technopolis)
European Commission - DG Internal Market and Services
Facts In 2005 the company "ODEON ENTERPRISE OF PUBLIC ENTERTAINMENT S.A.", hereinafter ODEON, opened the multiplex cinemas ODEON TALOS in Heraklion of Crete, in Greece. In the same area another multiplex called TECHNOPOLIS CINE TSAGKARAKIS S.A., hereinafter TECHNOPOLIS, has been active since (...)

The European Commission invites leading web search engine to submit remedies to address alleged abuse of dominance concerns (Google)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 21 May 2012, the Commission issued a press statement inviting Google to submit remedies to address four concerns it identified pursuant to the antitrust investigation it launched in November 2010 into a potential abuse by Google of its dominant market position. The Commission noted (...)

The Mexican Competition Commission accepts commitments and revokes monopolization fine imposed on telecommunications company (Telcel)
Jones Day (Mexico)
,
Jones Day (Mexico)
,
Jones Day (Mexico)
The Mexican Federal Competition Commission ("CFC") has revoked a fine of approximately US $1 billion that it had imposed on Mexican telecommunications company Radiomóvil Dipsa, S.A de C.V. (Telcel), a subsidiary of América Móvil, owned by Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim.The revocation resulted (...)

The Polish Competition Authority accepts commitments in the natural gas market (PGNiG)
European Commission (Brussels)
Poland: PGNiG’s Commitments in Abuse of Dominance Case in Gas Sector* On 13 April 2012, UOKiK adopted a decision which renders the commitments offered by Polskie Górnictwo Naftowe i Gazownictwo (PGNiG) binding in the framework of proceedings relating to an alleged abuse of dominant position on (...)

The Greek Competition Authority accepts commitments in a pay-TV case (Forthnet, Multichoice)
European Commission (Brussels)
Greece: The Competition Commission accepts Commitments in Digital Satellite Pay-TV Case* On 26 March 2012, the Grand Chamber of the Hellenic Competition Commission (HCC) decided, by a majority vote, to accept the commitments proposed by Forthnet S.A (Forthnet) and its subsidiary, Multichoice (...)

The European Commission opens an investigation against south Korean producer of smart phones and tablet computers for abusive use of its essential patents for 3G mobile and wireless telecommunications system standard (Samsung)
Criterion Economics
The European Commission opens an antitrust investigation against Samsung Electronic* On January 31, the European Commission announced the opening of a formal antitrust investigation against Samsung Electronic, the South Korean producer of smartphones and tablet computers. The case concerns the (...)

The French Competition Authority accepts and renders mandatory the commitments proposed to solve competition concerns on the meteorological services for businesses sector (Météo-France)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Press Release published on the official website of the French Competition Authority. The Autorité de la concurrence makes commitments by Météo-France regarding a clear separation between its business activities and its public service remit binding. Météo-France commits in particular to upgrade and (...)

The Irish Competition Authority accepts commitments from main television and radio broadcaster regarding discounts to advertisers (RTE)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 17 January 2012, the Competition Authority of Ireland (“ICA”) announced that it had successfully resolved an investigation against RTE, Ireland’s main television and radio broadcaster, in relation to allegedly anti- competitive discounts that were offered to advertisers. RTE has offered (...)

The Irish Competition Authority closes its investigations with binding commitments undertaken by the TV broadcasting company concerning advertising airtime deals (RTÉ)
Irish Competition Authority
Successful resolution to complaint against RTÉ* The Competition Authority has published details of the successful outcome of an investigation involving RTÉ, following a complaint made by TV3. TV3 had complained that RTÉ’s “share deal” was anti-competitive. The share deal is a scheme used by RTÉ (...)

The Regional Administrative Court of Lazio confirms a fine imposed by the Italian NCA against the construction market leader for abuse of dominant position in the plasterboard market (Mercato del Cartongesso, Saint-Gobain)
Economisti Associati
,
University Luiss Guido Carli - GRIF (Rome)
On the 24th of December 2011, the Regional Administrative Court of Lazio (‘RAC’)(Tribunale Amministrativo Regionale del Lazio) rejected the appeal from Saint-Gobain PPC Italia S.p.A. (‘Saint-Gobain‘), the Italian subsidiary of the multinational corporation leader worldwide in the construction (...)

The French Competition Authority renders legally binding commitments offered by leading retailer to remedy competition concerns on the retail distribution sector (Carrefour Market)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Press Release published on the official website of the French Competition Authority. The Autorité de la concurrence makes commitments proposed by Carrefour concerning a Parisian supermarket franchised under the Champion name binding. Carrefour commits to adapt the standard Carrefour Market (...)

The EU Commission makes commitments legally binding to ensure competition in mainframe maintenance market (IBM)
Stanford University - Stanford Law School
European Commission makes IBM’s commitments in the mainframe maintenance market legally binding* On 14 December 2011 the European Commission stated that it has made commitments offered by IBM Corporation in the mainframe maintenance market legally binding (see Newsletter 6/2011 p. 6, Newsletter (...)

The EU Commission market tests international multimedia news agency’s commitments on its licensing practices (Thomson Reuters)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 14 December 2011, the Commission announced that it was inviting comments on commitments offered by Thomson Reuters to address concerns that its licensing practices in relation to the Reuters Instrument Codes (“RICs”) may infringe Article 102 TFEU. RICs are codes that identify securities (...)

The European Commission adopts a commitment decision concerning the aftermarket for IT company mainframe maintenance (IBM)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
,
Italian Competition Authority (Roma)
An analysis of the IBM Commitment Decision concerning the aftermarket for IBM mainframe maintenance* The content of this article does not necessarily reflect the official position of the European Commission. Responsibility for the information and views expressed lies entirely with the (...)

The Spanish Competition Commission fines the incumbent postal operator for breach of commitments agreement (Correos)
European Commission (Brussels)
Spain: The CNC fines CORREOS for Breach of Commitments Agreement* In its Resolution of 23 August 2011, the National Competition Commission (CNC) Council found that it was established that the Sociedad Estatal Correos y Telégrafos, S.A. (Correos) had breached the Commitments Agreement concluded (...)

The Luxembourg Competition Council holds that cable operator did not properly implemented all the corrective measures imposed in its decision concerning an abuse of dominant position in the market for the distribution of TV programs by cable, DSL and satellite (CODITEL)
Brown Brothers Harriman (BBH) (Luxembourg)
,
Arendt & Medernach (Luxembourg)
FACTS OF THE DECISION The Luxembourg Competition Council (“the Competition Council”) issued a first decision on 10 December 2010 (“the Decision”) sanctioning Coditel under Article 5 of the Luxembourg competition Act (the “Competition Act”) on the grounds it abused its dominant position on the market (...)

The European Commission publishes commitments offered by a leading financial company (Standard & Poor’s)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Practising Law Institute
On 16 May 2011, the Commission published commitments offered by Standard & Poor’s (“S&P”) to remedy concerns regarding the pricing of international securities identification numbers (“ISINs”). ISINs are a standardized form of identification of securities which are needed in order to buy or (...)

The Bulgarian Supreme Administrative Court dismisses complainant’ standing to challenge commitments in antitrust cases (Zlaten Lev Capital)
Kinstellar (Sofia)
The Bulgarian Supreme Administrative Court (the “SAC”) rejected complainants’ locus standi to challenge the commitments accepted by the Bulgarian Commission for the Protection of Competition (the “CPC”) in antitrust cases. Complainants were considered to lack any cause for appeal because commitments (...)

The Italian Competition Authority accepts commitments proposed by the main IT operator closing the investigation for abuse of dominance on the online collecting advertisement market (Google Italy)
Criterion Economics
The Italian competition authority accepts Google’s commitments in the investigation concerning Google News in Italy* In January 2011, the Italian Competition Authority announced that it closed its investigation against Google Italy, for the alleged abuse of dominant position. The decision was (...)

The Italian Competition Authority accepts and enforces commitments offered by the main energy companies active in the Sicily electricity wholesale market (Enel, Tolling Edipower)
Ferrovie dello Stato (Rome)
Introduction With two resolutions adopted on 22 December 2010, the Italian Competition Authority («ICA») decided to close two parallel investigations opened on January 2010 on the conduct of major electricity producers active in the Sicily macro-area of the electricity wholesale market. ICA (...)

The Swedish Competition Authority follows up previous commitments and decides not to take further action against French global specialist in energy management (Schneider)
European Commission (Brussels)
* Article published in ECN Brief 01/2011. The original title of this article appears below the e-Competitions title. Please note that the ECN is not the actual "author" of this case summary, but the mere source. As mentioned by the ECN : "The information provided by the ECN Brief is for (...)

The European Commission adopts decision accepting structural commitments from the italian incumbent electricity operator (ENI)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Practising Law Institute
On 29 September 2010, the Commission announced that it had adopted a decision under Article 9 of Regulation 1/2003 [1] to accept commitments from ENI concerning Italy’s natural gas market. Notably, the commitments were of a structural nature, in that ENI proposed to divest its shares in three (...)

The German Competition Authority accepts commitments from electric heating providers to implement measures to open the market and reimburse customers
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Practising Law Institute
On 29 September 2010, the German Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) announced that an investigation into twenty-four electric heating operators suspected of abusing their respective dominant positions was closed after the FCO accepted commitments to resolve the competition concerns. The (...)

The French Competition Authority issues a decision making compulsory commitments made by two companies to resolve competition concerns in the household plastic packaging waste treatment (Eco-Emballages & Valorplast)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Press Release published on the official website of the French Competition Authority. Eco-Emballages and Valorplast commit to greater neutrality vis-à-vis local and regional administrations in order to ensure full competition between buyers.* Following a referral by DKT International, the (...)

The Polish Competition Authority issues first commitment decision on the basis of EU Law (ZAiKS)
European Commission (Brussels)
Poland: UOKiK issues first Commitment Decision on the Basis of EU Law On 24 August 2010, the President of the Polish Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (UOKiK) issued the UOKiK‘s first commitment decision on the basis of both national and EU law in a case concerning an abuse of (...)

The French Competition Authority launches a market test following a leading internet corporation commitments (Google)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Practising Law Institute
On 21 July 2010, the French Competition Authority published commitments offered by Google in an effort to resolve competition concerns identified by the Competition Authority in a decision of 30 June 2010. The 30 June decision granted interim measures to Navx, a company which sells online (...)

The French Competition Authority orders interim measures and assesses commitments to remedy antitrust concerns of abuse of dominance in the online advertising market (Google)
Jones Day (Paris)
Google offers commitments to get off the radar screen* A case involving Google confirms that the French Competition Authority is keen on using a combination of interim measures and commitment proceedings in order help it quickly resolve maters which it perceives as competition issues. This may (...)

The Italian Competition Authority imposes fine against construction market leader for abuse of dominant position in the plasterboard market (Saint-Gobain Italia)
European Commission (Brussels)
Italy: Competition Authority (ICA) imposes Fine on Saint-Gobain PPC Italia S.P.A. in the Plasterboard Market In its meeting of 30 June 2010, the ICA ruled that Saint Gobain Ppc Italia S.p.A. (Bpb Italia) had engaged in abusive behaviour infringing national and EU competition rules in order to (...)

The Hungarian Competition Council accepts commitments to remedy a suspected abuse of dominant position concerning the pricing of mortgages vis-à-vis "captured consumers"
Ernst & Young
The Hungarian Competition Council adopted a commitment decision terminating an investigation relating to the suspected abuse of dominant position by one of the leading banks in Hungary offering personal banking services, including housing loans (mortgages). The investigation was triggered by (...)

The European Commission accepts commitments offered by Swedish incumbent electricity operator in the electricity transmission market (Svenska Kraftnät)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
,
E.CA Economics (Berlin)
,
Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators (ACER) (Slovenia)
"Swedish Interconnector case /Improving electricity cross-border trade"* I. Introduction The size of the transmission network is a key determinant of competition in wholesale electricity markets. The larger this network, the more suppliers inject their electricity and hence compete for (...)

The EU General Court examines an appeal against a Commission decision in the chip manufacturing sector (Hynix Semiconductor)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Practising Law Institute
The details of two appeals lodged at the General Court (“GC”) by Hynix Semiconductor (“Hynix”) against two Commission decisions concerning US chip manufacturer Rambus were published in the Official Journal of 5 June 2010. In December 2009, the Commission issued a decision closing an investigation (...)

The European Commission makes legally binding commitments proposed by French incumbent electricity operator in long term contracts case (EDF)
European Commission - DG HOME
,
European Commission - DG ENER
,
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"The EDF long term contracts case: addressing foreclosure for the long term benefit of industrial customers"* I. Introduction On 17 March 2010, the Commission adopted a decision making legally binding the commitments offered by EDF (the incumbent operator) on the French market for the supply (...)

The Bulgarian competition authority considers behavioural commitments in cases of refusal to supply (E.On Bulgaria, EVN Bulgaria)
Kinstellar (Sofia)
The Bulgarian Commission for Protection of Competition (the “CPC”) considered behavioural commitments in two cases of dominant undertakings’ refusal to supply for a first time in its practice. In both cases, the proposed commitments essentially boiled down to the adoption of internal instructions (...)

The Polish President of the Office for Competition and Consumer Protection accepts commitments submitted by satellite pay-TV platform regarding the use of exclusive sports media rights (Cyfrowy Polsat)
Polish Competition Authority (Warsaw)
,
Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (OCCP)
Decision On 12 February 2010, the President of the Office for Competition and Consumer Protection (OCCP) issued a decision which rendered plausible that Cyfrowy Polsat (pay-TV operator) had abused its dominant position by selling rights for public broadcasting of Euro 2008 subject to acquire (...)

The EU Commission announces a market test on commitments offered by an energy company (ENI)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Practising Law Institute
On 4 February 2010, the Commission announced that the Italian energy company ENI had proposed structural remedies to address the Commission’s concerns that the management and operation of natural gas transmission pipelines by ENI could infringe Article 102 TFEU, and stated its intention to (...)

The European Commission market tests commitments offered by an energy company (E.ON)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Practising Law Institute
On 22 January 2010, the Commission published in the Official Journal a series of commitments offered by E.ON to address concerns raised by the Commission with respect to the German gas markets. According to the Commission’s preliminary assessment, E.ON may have infringed Article 102 TFEU by (...)

The Italian Competition Authority closes investigation into an online news aggregator service following commitments (Google)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Practising Law Institute
The Italian Competition Authority (“ICA”) has recently terminated an antitrust investigation into Google after accepting and making binding commitments offered by Google to resolve two concerns raised during the ICA’s investigation. The ICA’s investigation started in August 2009, when Google was (...)

The European Commission renders legally binding commitment offered by US software undertaking concerning web browsers (Microsoft)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
,
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
,
FTI Consulting (Brussels)
"The Commission’s decision in the Microsoft Internet Explorer case and recent developments in the area of interoperability"* I. Commitment decision on the tying of Internet Explorer to Windows A. Introduction On 16 December 2009, the Commission adopted a commitment decision (‘the Decision’) (...)

The Italian Competition Authority accepts commitments proposed by the historical postal operator (Poste Italiane - Aumento Commissione Bollettini C/C)
European Commission (Brussels)
Italy: The Antitrust Authority (ICA) accepts Commitments by Poste Italiane On 16 December 2009, the Italian Competition Authority accepted binding commitments proposed by Poste Italiane during an investigation into a possible abuse of dominant position in the collection and payment services (...)

The European Commission renders legally binding commitments offered by US software undertaking to lower memory chip royalty rates (Rambus)
European Commission - DG TRADE
,
European Parliament (Luxembourg)
"Patent ambush in standard-setting: the Commission accepts commitments from Rambus to lower memory chip royalty rates"* I. Introduction Standardisation involves competitors sitting around a table agreeing technical developments for their industry. Normally, antitrust rules do not allow (...)

The European Commission renders legally binding commitments offered by French and German incumbent gas operators concerning long-term capacity bookings (GDF, E.ON)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
,
European Commission - DG ENER
,
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
The Commission’s GDF and E.ON Gas decisions concerning long-term capacity bookings - Use of own infrastructure as possible abuse under Article 102 TFEU* I. Introduction The Commission’s commitment decisions of December 2009 and May 2010 in the GDFand E.ON Gas cases dealt with foreclosure (...)

The European Commission market tests commitments proposed by the French incumbent operator concerning French electricity retail market (EDF)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Practising Law Institute
On 4 November 2009, the Commission announced that it was launching a market test of commitments offered by French energy company EDF to address allegedly abusive long-term contracts entered into by EDF. The move follows the sending of a Statement of Objections to EDF in December 2008. The (...)

The Italian Competition Authority closes two investigations against the manager of rail networkgroup without finding any competition infringement (NTV/RFI-Accesso al Nodo di Napoli)
Desogus Law Office (Cagliari)
Two investigations conducted by the Italian Competition Authority (ICA) against the incumbent rail operator, the Ferrovie dello Stato group (FS), over alleged infringements of Article 82 EC have been closed by a commitment and an acquittal decision. The ICA started the investigations against FS (...)

The Portuguese Competition Authority forbids abusive behaviour and imposes commitments in agricultural market (Sugalidal-Heinz)
Sérvulo & Associados
Last October 15th, the Portuguese Competition Authority (Autoridade da Concorrência, hereinafter “PCA”) decided that Sugalidal abused its dominant position in the market for seeds by imposing farmers to acquire and plant only Heinz seeds. According to the Press Release 20/2009, the cPCA decided (...)

The Portuguese Competition Authority dismisses tying charges following commitments (Heinz tomato seeds - Sugalidal)
University of Lisbon
,
Abreu Advogados
Following the acceptance of the commitments offered by food-industry company Sugalidal - Indústrias de Alimentação, the Portuguese Competition Authority (PCA) published on 15 October a press release announcing the dismissal of charges regarding abuse of dominance under the form of tying practices. (...)

The European Commission market tests commitments proposed by a leading software company to address allegations of tying an internet browser (Microsoft)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Practising Law Institute
On 7 October 2009, the Commission announced that it was beginning a market test of commitments offered by Microsoft to address allegations that it tied its web browser Internet Explorer with its client PC operating system. The move follows the publication of a Statement of Objections earlier (...)

An Italian Administrative Court partially annulls the NCA decision to accept the commitments submitted by motorway companies in a proceeding relating to alleged abuse of dominant position in the roadside assistance market (ANAS, Società Strada dei Parchi, Società Autostrada Tirrenica)
Ashurst
,
Legance - Studio Legale Associato
,
Background With two decisions issued on 22 April 2009, the Italian Administrative Tribunal (Tribunale Amministrativo Regonale, “TAR”) ruled on the power of the Italian Competition Authority (“ICA”) to accept commitments offered by undertakings under investigation for alleged anticompetitive (...)

The French Competition Authority abandons commitments procedure and adopts interim measures in photovoltaic case (EDF)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Practising Law Institute
On 8 April 2009, the French Competition Authority decided to reject commitments offered by the EDF group («EDF«) – the French electricity incumbent – with respect to the emerging market for photovoltaic electricity (the «photovoltaic market«) and instead to impose interim measures and continue its (...)

The Latvian Competition Council adopts a decision finding an abuse of dominant position in the freeport of Riga management and towing services market (Freeport of Riga Authority)
PwC (Riga)
On March 24, 2009, the Latvian Competition Council (CC) adopted a decision finding an infringement of competition rules by the Freeport of Riga Authority (FRA), which was accused of abusing its dominant position in order to restrict competitor’s commercial activities in the related market. The (...)

The European Commission adopts a commitment decision concerning a possible abuse of a dominant position in the German gas transmission markets (RWE)
European Commission - DG ENER
,
DG REGIO Regional and urban policy
,
European Commission - DG SANCO
"The RWE gas foreclosure case: Another energy network divestiture to address foreclosure concerns"* I. Introduction On 18 March 2009 the Commission adopted a commitment decision against RWE AG for suspected infringement of EU competition law. The commitments were offered by RWE to address the (...)

The French Competition Authority accepts commitments in the motorway sector (Autoroutes du Sud de la France)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Practising Law Institute
On 16 February 2009, the French Competition Council accepted commitments from several operators of motorway concessions in France (hereinafter referred to as the “motorway network operators”) to resolve concerns that each may have abused their respective dominant positions as regards the granting (...)

The French Competition Authority market tests commitments offered in the energy sector (EDF)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Practising Law Institute
On 7 January 2009, the French Competition Authority released a market test notice concerning certain commitments offered by the French electricity incumbent, the EDF group (“EDF”). EDF is the largest supplier of electricity in France and one of the largest players in the European electricity (...)

The Italian Competition Authority accepts the commitments offered in the voice communications and broadband internet access services markets following its investigation into alleged abuse of dominant position (Telecom Italia)
Bonelli Erede Pappalardo (Rome)
By its Decision delivered on 11 December 2008, the Italian Competition Authority (the "ICA") decided to close the proceedings initiated against Telecom Italia ("TI"), by adopting a commitment decision under Art. 14-ter of Law 287/1990 (the Italian Competition Act) which implements the provision (...)

The German Federal Cartel Office settles a number of proceedings against gas suppliers for alleged abuse of dominance and accepts commitments offering compensation to consumers worth € 127 M (Gas price procedures)
University of East Anglia - CCP (Norwich)
Summary The German Federal Cartel Office (FCO) settled a number of proceedings against German gas suppliers for the alleged abuse of a dominant position under sections 19 and 29 of the Act Against Restraints of Competition (ARC) (gas price procedures). Until December 2008 the FCO had accepted (...)

The European Commission approves structural remedies offered by German electricity operator in order to remove suspected infringements of EU Article 102 concerns in the German electricity wholesale and balancing markets (E.ON)
DG REGIO Regional and urban policy
,
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
,
Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators (ACER) (Slovenia)
"The E.ON electricity cases: an antitrust decision with structural remedies"* I. Introduction On 26 November 2008 the Commission adopted a commitment decision addressed to E.ON AG for suspected infringements of EU competition law involving the German electricity markets. For the first time in (...)

The Italian Competition Authority accepts the commitments submitted by motorway companies in a proceeding relating to alleged anticompetitive agreements and abuse of dominant position in the roadside assistance market in Italy (ANAS, Società Strada dei Parchi, Società Autostrada Tirrenica)
Ashurst
,
Legance - Studio Legale Associato
,
Background On 20 September 2007, the ICA opened a proceeding regarding car assistance services provided in Italy on motorways, alleging that a) the motorways companies had breached Article 3 of Law 287/90 (national provision similar to art. 82 EC) and b) the roadside assistance providers, (...)

The Lazio Regional Administrative Tribunal upholds a Competition Authority’s decision finding that mobile phone operators do not hold a collective dominant position in the market for access to mobile phone network (Eutelia)
Latham & Watkins (Brussels)
Introduction The Regional Administrative Tribunal of Latium, Rome office, First Chamber (“TAR Latium”) by a judgment of 31 December 2008, has upheld a decision of the Italian Antitrust Authority (“IAA”) finding that the Mobile Network Operators (“MNOs”) TIM, Vodafone and Wind do not hold a (...)

The French Competition Authority accepts commitments from the incumbent operator in the sector of engineering, consultancy and certification of telecommunication facilities in a case of alleged abuse of dominant position (Solutel / France Télécom)
Dechert (Paris)
,
Herbert Smith Freehills (Paris)
In a decision of 7 October 2008, the French Competition Council (the "Council") accepted commitments submitted by France Telecom regarding an alleged abuse of its dominant position in the sector of engineering, consultancy and certification of private telecommunications facilities pursuant to (...)

The Austrian Federal Competition Authority settles a dispute regarding jet fuel supply at the Vienna International Airport (OMV)
Reidlinger Schatzmann Rechtsanwälte
,
Bpv Hügel (Vienna)
In a decision of 4 April 2008, the Austrian Cartel Court declared certain commitments agreed between the Federal Competition Authority ("FCA") and Austrian oil incumbent (OMV) binding on OMV. Background The case’s beginnings lie in a conflict between two companies with strong State (...)

The European Commission finds that Greece has infringed art. 86(1) in conjunction with art. 82 of the EC Treaty by maintaining the preferential access to lignite in favour of the incumbent Greek electricity provider (PPC)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
,
Chrysses Demetriades & Co. LLC (Limassol)
"The importance of access to fuels for competition in the electricity sector: the case of lignite in Greece"* On 5 March 2008 the Commission adopted a Decision finding that the Hellenic Republic had infringed Article 86(1) in conjunction with Article 82 of the EC Treaty by maintaining the (...)

The Danish Competition Appeals Tribunal partly confirms and partly annuls a decision of the NCA’s on excessive pricing in the wholesale market for physical electricity in Western Denmark (Elsam III)
Kromann Reumert (Copenhagen)
On 3 March 2008, the Danish Competition Appeals Tribunal decided an appeal against an exces-sive pricing decision made by the Danish Competition Council on 20 June 2007. In the original de-cision, the Council had concluded that Danish electricity producer Elsam had abused its dominant position (...)

The European Commission welcomes submission of structural remedies to address two on-going investigations (E.ON)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Practising Law Institute
On 28 February 2008, the Commission adopted a press release welcoming proposals submitted by E.ON under Article 9 of Regulation 1/2003 to address two on-going investigations relating to competition in the German electricity market. As announced in the Commission’s press release, E.ON has (...)

The Lazio Administrative Tribunal rejects appeals regarding margin squeeze in the Italian telecoms market (Telecom Italia / Wind)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Practising Law Institute
In a recently published judgment of 23 January 2008, the Lazio Administrative Tribunal (“LAT”) has rejected the appeals brought by Telecom Italia and Wind against the decision of the Italian Competition Authority (“ICA”) finding that Telecom and Wind had abused their respective dominant positions (...)

The French Competition Council inflicts a € 45 M fine on the telecommunications incumbent for abusive discrimination and denigration on the ADSL high-speed Internet access market and specifies the notion of repeated infringements (France Télécom-Wanadoo)
Concurrences (Paris)
(Handook N° F12) The facts In the beginning of 2000, the incumbent telecommunications operator France Telecom has tried to dominate the emerging market of high-speed Internet access. Some of these attempts lead to important decisions from both the French Competition Council (the “Conseil”) and (...)

The German Federal Cartel Office declares binding the commitments of RWE to cease the abuse proceedings for factoring CO2 certificates into its electricity tariffs (RWE)
Gleiss Lutz (Munich)
,
Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy (Munich)
On 26 September 2007, the German Federal Cartel Office (FCO) ceased abuse proceedings launched against RWE AG (RWE) in 2005 after it had declared RWE’s commitments to auction off electricity to be binding. The proceedings centred on the question whether RWE had abused its alleged dominant market (...)

The European Court of First Instance partially upholds the Commission’s decision concerning an abuse of a dominant position in the PC operating system (Microsoft)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
,
FTI Consulting (Brussels)
,
Belgian Competition Authority (Brussels)
"The judgment of the Court of First Instance in the Microsoft case"* I. The 2004 Decision On 24 March 2004, the Commission adopted a decision pursuant to Article 82 EC concluding that Microsoft had abused its dominant position in the PC operating system market by (i) refusing to provide (...)

The Hungarian Competition Authority’s first investigation based on the Hungarian Trade Act ends with undertakings imposed in the large retail distribution sector without final decision on alleged abuse of dominant position (Tesco)
Hogan Lovells
,
Hogan Lovells
The Hungarian Competition Authority (“HCA”) ordered Tesco to give undertakings in the first proceedings based on the Hungarian Trade Act without concluding whether or not there had been an infringement of the prohibition of abuse of dominant position. Summary In July 2006, the Hungarian (...)

The Italian Competition Authority accepts for the first time commitments but also imposes fines in the same case (Vodafone / TIM / Wind)
Paul Hastings (Milano)
,
Linklaters (Milan)
On 3 August 2007, the Italian Antitrust Authority ("IAA") closed proceedings initiated against three telecom companies (Tim, Vodafone and Wind) with a decision which affirmed important principles in Italian procedural competition law. There is, however, room for debate as to whether the (...)

The Italian Competition Authority accepts commitments from the main mobile phone operators following investigations on alleged abuse of joint dominant position (Vodafone / TIM / Wind)
Studio Legale DDPV
The Italian antitrust Authority closed an investigation against the main mobile phone operators in Italy (Telecom Italia Mobile SpA , Vodafone Omnitel and Wind) for an alleged abuse of their joint dominant position in the markets of telecommunication services in Italy. In particular, the (...)

The Italian Competition Authority accepts commitments in the mobile telephony market closing its investigation against the three mobile network operators under Art. 81 and 82 EC (Tele2 / Vodafone / TIM / Wind)
The Italian Competition Authority (AGCM) continues to use its new powers to issue commitments decisions. Similarly to article 9 of Council Regulation (EC) n° 1/2003, of 16 December 2002, on the implementation of the rules on competition laid down in Articles 81 and 82 of the Treaty (OJEC L 1, 4 (...)

The Italian Competition Authority accepts commitments presented by a pharmaceutical company authorising potential competitors’ access to its products, with, inter alia, a free licence to manufacturers of generic pharmaceuticals (Merck - Principi Attivi)
National University of Singapore
The Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato (the Italian Competition Authority, hereinafter also the “Authority”) recently closed proceedings in the pharmaceutical sector by accepting the commitments presented by Merck. The investigation against the American pharmaceutical company (...)

The Italian Competition Authority closes proceedings against the gas incumbent for alleged breach of Art. 82 EC by accepting commitments in the sector of regasification facilities without imposing sanctions (ENI)
National University of Singapore
On 9 March 2007, the “Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato” (hereinafter, also “AGCM”) closed proceedings against ENI, the Italian dominant undertaking in the gas sector, and its subsidiaries without fines and accepted the commitments proposed. In particular, the AGCM had previously (...)

The German Federal Cartel Office accepts commitments offered by four major gas transmission companies ensuring the compatibility of long term gas supply agreements with Art. 81 & 82 EC and German competition law (Bayerngas, Gas-Union, Saar Ferngas, Wingas)
Hengeler Mueller (Dusseldorf)
I. Background In 2003, the German Federal Cartel Office (FCO) began to investigate long term gas supply contracts between gas transmission companies and regional/local gas distributors. According to these investigations, in the German gas market as a whole approximately 75% of all gas supply (...)

The Italian Competition Authority accepts commitments from the Italian electricity incumbent and closes proceedings for alleged breach of art. 82 EC without imposing sanctions (Comportamenti Restrittivi sulla Borsa Elettrica)
National University of Singapore
On 20 December 2006 the Italian Competition Authority (hereinafter, also ‘‘AGCM’’) accepted commitments by Enel S.p.a. (hereinafter, also Enel) and its subsidiary Enel Produzione S.p.a. (hereinafter, also Enel Produzione), and closed investigations in the wholesale electricity sector without (...)

The Italian Competition Authority accepts commitments aims at facilitating competitors’ access to patented drugs (Merck - Principi Attivi)
London School of Economics
Article 5 of Council Regulation (EC) n° 1/2003, of 16 December 2002, on the implementation of the rules on competition laid down in Articles 81 and 82 of the Treaty (OJEU L 1, 4 January 2003, p. 1-25) allowed National Competition Authorities to accept commitments in proceedings concerning the (...)

The UK Gas and Electricity Markets Authority accepts commitments following a complaint from an Independent Connection’s Provider against anti-competitive conditions of electricity connection services (SP Manweb)
In October 2002, the Office of Gas and Electricity Markets (Ofgem) received a complaint from an Independent Connection’s Provider (ICP) alleging that SP Manweb, which is wholly owned by Scottish Power UK plc Group, had engaged in anti-competitive behaviour when providing non-contestable (...)

The Belgian Competition Authority accepts commitments and closes proceedings for breach of Art. 82 EC on electronic payment services and debit card terminals markets (Banksys)
Autorité de contrôle prudentiel
Background Following an investigation initiated by the Belgian Ministry of Economy in 2000 and two complaints lodged by small businesses associations in 2002, an enquiry was launched on 29 June 2004 by the Belgian Competition Council (Conseil de la concurrence) about alleged anticompetitive (...)

The Italian competition authority closes proceedings for alleged breach of Art. 82 EC following commitments made by the undertaking on the audiovisual rights market (Mediaset - Diritti Calcistici II)
London School of Economics
Background and procedure The present case note concerns the follow-up of a decision to open proceedings adopted by the Italian NCA in March 2005 that was commented in a previous issue of e-Competitions (P. Ibañez Colomo, “ The Italian competition authority opens proceedings against Reti (...)

The Polish Competition Authority fines a sport news paper 500 000 € for unfair and abusive prices (Marquard Media Polska)
French National Research Agency (ANR)
On June 12, 2006 the President of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (hereafter : OCCP President) rendered his final decision concerning the practices of the publisher Marquard Media Polska Sp. z o. o. (hereafter : Marquard Media). This decision terminates the antimonopoly (...)

The Italian Competition Authority accepts commitment from the energy incumbent to remedy concerns about its position in gas markets (ENI)
Paul Hastings (Milano)
The energy company ENI, the former legal monopolist in the natural gas market, has been involved in a number of competition cases before the Italian Competition Authority (ICA) in the recent past. The most recent proceedings were closed in March 2007, without the breach having been assessed, (...)

The UK Office of Fair Trading accepts commitments offered by a free news paper alleviating its exclusive distribution rights in London underground and train stations (Metro - Associated Newspapers Ltd.)
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (London)
,
King’s College (London)
On 1st March 2006 the OFT adopted a decision accepting binding commitments offered by Associated Newspapers Limited (ANL). Accordingly, the OFT closed its file in respect of an investigation into an alleged breach by ANL of UK and EC competition rules through the conclusion of contracts (...)

The European Commission renders legally binding commitments offered by the largest rough diamonds producer to phase out diamond purchases from the most important competitor (De Beers)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
,
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"De Beers: commitments to phase out diamond purchases from the most important competitor"* 1. Overview On 22 February 2006 the Commission adopted a decision pursuant to Article 9 of Regulation 1/2003 (hereafter: ‘Reg. 1/2003’) which rendered binding the commitments offered by De Beers in order (...)

The Belgian Competition Council accepts commitments in order to improve competition on the soft drink market (Coca-Cola)
Smartflats
,
Liège University - IEJE
This case began in 1998 when a wholesaler, Distri-One, complained to the Competition Office of the Federal Public Service Economy (hereinafter the “Competition Office”) about the distribution practices of Coca-Cola Enterprises Belgium (hereinafter CCEB) on the basis of article 3 of the Belgian (...)

The Danish Competition Council clears a new distribution agreement put into place by the leading news services agency (Ritzau)
Smartflats
,
Liège University - IEJE
Ritzau Bureau I/S (hereafter “Ritzau” ) is an agency that provides extensive Danish-language news coverage - both national and international - all around the clock. The value of these services to media operators (i. e. newspaper, radio and television) is twofold. First, it provides them with an (...)

The Polish Competition Authority accepts commitments from a water supply operator while stating that the operator has imposed onerous conditions which lead to unjustified profits (Krakow Water Supply and Sewage Municipal Company)
French National Research Agency (ANR)
The commented decision which was rendered on October, 14 2005 by the President of the Office for Competition and Consumer Protection (hereafter, “OCCP President” or “President of the Office”) results from the consumer complaint concerning the behaviour of Krakow Water Supply and Sewage Municipal (...)

The European Commission adopts a commitment decision preventing a leading soft drinks manufacturer from entering into exclusive supply arrangements and from practicing growth and target rebates or from leveraging market power between various product categories (Coca Cola)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
,
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"Coca-Cola: Europe-wide remedies in fizzy drinks"* 1. Introduction On 22 June 2005 the Commission adopted a commitment decision based on Article 9 of Regulation 1/2003 addressed to The Coca-Cola Company (’TCCC’) and three of its major bottlers (all together: ’Coca-Cola’), making the commitments (...)

The European Court of First Instance rejects US software company’s request for interim measures (Microsoft)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
,
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
,
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"The Court of First Instance rejects Microsoft’s request for interim measures concerning the Commission’s decision of 24 March 2004"* 1. The decision On March 24 2004, the Commission adopted a decision in Case COMP/C-3/37.792 — Microsoft — by which it concluded that Microsoft had abused its (...)

The European Commission accepts formal commitments from Israeli-based producer of firewall and virtual private network (VPN) software regarding its distribution practices (Checkpoint)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
"Commission accepts formal undertaking from Check Point regarding its distribution practices"* In June 2001, the Commission received a complaint from Stonesoft Corporation, a Finnish software company, against Check Point Software Technologies, an Israeli-based producer of firewall and virtual (...)

Mergers

The European Court of Justice sets aside the first judgment of the General Court annulling a commitment decision and dismisses breaches of the principle of proportionality and due process standards by the Commission (Alrosa, De Beers)
Université Catholique de Louvain
Alrosa, negotiated procedures and the procedural economy/due process conundrum – one step forward, three steps back?* Friends of the blogosphere: greetings! There was something refreshing in the judgment rendered in 2007 by the General Court (GC) in the Alrosa case (T-170/06). If somewhat (...)

Procedures

The Slovak Antimonopoly Office initiates public discussion on the amendment of the competition act
Agency for the Cooperation of Energy Regulators (ACER) (Slovenia)
,
University of Oxford
,
Factual background As a follow-up to the release by the Slovak Anti-Monopoly Office (the “AMO”) of information on the planned amendment of the Slovak Competition Act (the “Act”), the AMO recently initiated public discussion on the amendment. The declared purpose of the amendment is to better link (...)

The Irish High Court issues its first order on a commitment agreement between the NCA and an undertaking (FitFlop)
Queen’s University Belfast
,
National University of Irland (NUI)
The Irish Competition (Amendment) Act 2012 introduced court-endorsed commitment agreements to Irish competition law. The new section 14B of the principal Competition Act 2002 provides for making commitment agreements between the Irish Competition Authority (or indeed Com Reg when it is the (...)

The Polish Competition Authority publishes guidelines on commitment decisions in antitrust cases and in cases of practices infringing collective consumer interests
European Commission (Brussels)
Poland: New Guidelines concerning Commitment Decisions* On 26 July 2012, the Polish Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (UOKiK) published Guidelines on commitment decisions in antitrust cases and in cases of practices infringing collective consumer interests (the Guidelines). The (...)

The Italian Competition Authority launches a public consultation on the new draft guidelines on the commitment procedure
Bonelli Erede Pappalardo (Rome)
A few months after the appointment of its new President (Mr Giovanni Pitruzzella) on 29 November 2011, the Italian Competition Authority (“ICA”) launched a public consultation on new draft guidelines on the commitment procedure which will amend the notice of October 2006 adopted soon after the (...)

The Italian Competition Authority proposes a draft notice on new commitments procedure
European Commission (Brussels)
Italy: The Competition Authority proposes Draft Notice on new Commitments Procedure* On 15 May 2012, the Italian Competition Authority (ICA) decided to launch a public consultation on a draft Notice on the new procedure under Article 14-ter of the Antitrust Law (Law 10 October 1990, n. 287), (...)

The Irish Parliament examines a new competition bill
European Commission (Brussels)
Ireland: New Competition Bill before Parliament* A Bill which will make significant amendments to Irish competition law is now making its way through Parliament. The Bill is in its final stages of being passed by the Parliament and is expected to become law before the Summer. The Competition (...)

The EU Commission publishes a notice regarding commitments dealing with restrictions as regards licensing practices (Thomson Reuters)
Stanford University - Stanford Law School
Thomson Reuters offers commitments to close investigation by European Commission* On 14 December 2011 the European Commission published a notice inviting comments on commitments offered by Thomson Reuters that address concerns about whether its licensing practices, in relation to the Reuters (...)

The European Commission reforms antitrust procedures and expands role of hearing officer
European Commission (Brussels)
European Commission reforms Antitrust Procedures and expands Role of Hearing Officer* On 17 October 2011, the European Commission adopted a package of measures aimed at increasing interaction with parties in antitrust proceedings and strengthening the mechanisms for safeguarding parties’ (...)

The Finnish Competition Authority accepts commitments to improve access of independent repairers to access to the technical training programs for Mercedes-Benz vehicles (Veho)
European Commission (Brussels)
Finland: Veho’s Commitments to improve Access of independent Repairers to Training made legally binding On 28 June 2010, Veho Group Oy Ab’s (Veho)’s commitments, which had been accepted by the Finnish Competition Authority (FCA) in its decision of 28 May 2010 in order to improve the independent (...)

The French Supreme Court reaffirms its case law on the parties’ right of access to documents in the framework of the commitments procedure (CRSP)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
In three judgments of 2 February 2010 (all published on 23 February 2010) the French Supreme Court annulled the judgments of 26 November 2008, whereby the Paris Court of Appeal had annulled commitments decisions adopted by the French Competition Authority in the pharmaceutical sector. This case (...)

The Italian Administrative Supreme Court upholds a tribunal judgment which partially annulled the Italian Competition Authority’s commitment decision for excess of power (Federazione Italiana Sport Equestri)
Bonelli Erede Pappalardo (Rome)
http://www.giustizia-amministrativa.it/webcds/ElencoSentenze.asp By its judgment delivered on 11 November 2009, the Italian Last Instance Administrative Court (“Consiglio di Stato”) upheld the judgment of the Court of First Instance (“Tar Lazio”) which had annulled the Italian Competition (...)

The Paris Court of Appeal holds that, in compliance with the adversarial principle, the parties to the commitments procedure shall have access to all documents on the basis of which the case handler had drafted its preliminary assessment (Canal 9 / Les Indépendants)
Norton Rose Fulbright (Paris)
Following the quashing of its first decision , the Paris Court of Appeal held, in the present decision , that in compliance with the adversarial principle, the parties to the commitments procedure shall have access to all documents on the basis of which the French Rapporteur (the “case handler”) (...)

The UK Competition Appeal Tribunal rules, for the first time ever, against a Competition Commission’s market investigation remedy (Tesco)
RBB Economics (London)
Summary On 4 March 2009 the UK Competition Appeal Tribunal (CAT) upheld Tesco’s appeal against a remedy proposed by the Competition Commission (the Commission) based on its wide-ranging investigation into the UK grocery market published on 30 April 2008. Tesco had challenged only one aspect of (...)

The French Supreme Court rules that parties to a commitments procedure must have access to all documents on which the case-handler has relied and to all documents submitted to the Competition Council (Canal 9/Les Indépendants)
Vogel & Vogel
The highest commercial court in France has for the first time addressed the question of procedural safeguards for undertakings concerned during the commitments procedure laid down in article L. 464-2, I of the Commercial Code. The aim of the procedure is “to ensure that the undertaking ceases or (...)

An Austrian Court declares behavioural commitments concerning broadcasting rights of the skiing world cup binding upon the public TV/radio provider and the Austrian skiing association (ÖRF / ÖSV)
European Court of Justice (Luxembourg)
At the request of the Austrian Federal Competition Authority (Bundeswettbewerbs-ehörde ; “BWB”), the Vienna High Court in competition matters (Oberlandesgericht Wien als Kartellgericht), by (unpublished) order of 18 January 2008, in Case 26 Kt 42/06, adopted on the basis of Sec 27(1) of the (...)

The Italian Government issues a law decree aiming at the complete liberalisation of markets and a system of effective competition (Bersani’s Decree Law)
Gattai, Minoli, Agostinelli, Partners (Roma)
,
ECR Legal (Roma)
The Italian Government issued Law Decree 4 July 2006, known as Bersani’s Decree from the name of its promoter, inspired by the EC rules which favour fair and transparent access to markets, the removal of the regulatory barriers and the granting of power to the Commission to enforce competition (...)

The UK Office of Fair Trading accepts for the first time binding commitments following a Competition Act 1998 investigation (TV Eye)
UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) (London)
1. Introduction In this Decision, the Office of Fair Trading ("OFT") accepted for the first time binding commitments following a Competition Act 1998 ("1998 Act") investigation. The investigation related to possible infringements of Chapter I and Chapter II of the 1998 Act. The commitments (...)

The UK Office of Fair Trading gives notice of intention to accept commitments to remedy competition concerns about a joint agreement on terms of supply under Art. 81 EC and UK Chapt. I Prohibition (TV Eye)
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (London)
,
Squire Patton Boggs (London)
OFT, Notice under paragraph 2 of schedule 6a of the Competition Act 1998 of intention to accept binding commitments pursuant to section 31a (2) of the Act (TV Eye Limited), 2 March 2005 The UK Competition Act 1998 was amended, with effect as of 1 May 2004, to allow the OFT to accept binding (...)

The Council of the EU adopts a new regulation on the implementation of Articles 81 and 82 of the EC Treaty (Regulation 1/2003)
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
,
European Commission - DG COMP (Brussels)
,
Latham & Watkins (Brussels)
"Regulation 1/2003: a modernised application of EC competition rules"* I. Introduction On 16 December 2002, the Council adopted a new Regulation on the implementation of Articles 81 and 82 EC: Regulation 1/2003 (OJ 2003, L1/1). This Regulation replaces Regulation 17, which for over 40 years (...)

Regulations

The Romanian Competition Council adopts guidelines on commitments procedure and launches market test on commitments on the joint selling of commercial rights for football broadcasting (Romanian Football Federation and the Professional Football League)
European Commission (Brussels)
* Article published in ECN Brief 01/2011. The original title of this article appears below the e-Competitions title. Please note that the ECN is not the actual "author" of this case summary, but the mere source. As mentioned by the ECN : "The information provided by the ECN Brief is for (...)

The UK Office of Communications publishes annual report considering the impact of the Telecoms Review and BT undertakings on the telecoms market (BT Undertakings)
Allen & Overy (London)
Introduction In 2004, the UK Office of Communications (Ofcom) conducted a strategic review of the UK telecommunications sector (the Review). The Review led to the imposition of a set of undertakings on British Telecom (BT), the UK incumbent telecoms provider (the BT Undertakings), which were (...)

Public sector

The Lithuanian Competition Council accepts commitments by eight pharmaceutical companies after an investigation into possible anticompetitive vertical agreement (Berlin Chemie Menarini Baltic, GlaxoSmithKline Lietuva)
European Commission (Brussels)
Lithuania: The Competition Council accepts Commitments by eight pharmaceutical Companies* On 21 July 2011, the Lithuanian Competition Council (the CC) closed an investigation into possible anticompetitive vertical agreements between producers/suppliers and wholesalers of pharmaceuticals with (...)

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