Internet & Antitrust

Anticompetitive practices

The Turkish Competition Authority publishes revised Guidelines on vertical agreements
ELIG Gürkaynak Attorneys-at-Law (Istanbul)
The Turkish Competition Authority (“Authority”) completed its work in progress on revising the Guidelines on Vertical Agreements (“Guidelines”) that was issued based on the Block Exemption Communiqué on Vertical Agreements (“Communiqué No. 2002/2”). It took approximately 2 years for the Authority to (...)

The German Competition Authority allows a company to launch an online trading platform for steel products (Klöckner)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Klöckner allowed to launch digital platform for steel products* The Bundeskartellamt has no objections to plans by Klöckner & Co SE, Duisburg to set up the business to business online trading platform "XOM Metals" for the sale of steel products. After talks with the Bundeskartellamt, (...)

The German Competition Authority launches a sector inquiry into market conditions in the online advertising sector
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt launches sector inquiry into market conditions in online advertising sector* The Bundeskartellamt has launched a sector inquiry into the online advertising sector. Andreas Mundt, President of the Bundeskartellamt: "Online advertising has experienced an extraordinarily high (...)

The German Federal Court of Justice confirms that the general prohibition of the use of price comparison engines by retailers is illegal (Asics)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
ASICS dealers allowed to use price comparison engines - Federal Court of Justice confirms Bundeskartellamt’s decision* In its decision of 12 December, 2017, published on 19 January, 2018, the Federal Court of Justice decided that ASICS may not forbid its dealers from using price comparison (...)

The EU Court of Justice rules in favour of restrictions on the use of platforms in a selective distribution system (Coty)
Gibson Dunn (Brussels)
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Gibson Dunn (Brussels)
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Gibson Dunn (Brussels)
This article considers how much the Coty Ruling has shed light on the extent to which a manufacturer can restrict the sales of its products over online platforms, especially in the wake of the recent German Case involving ASICS and basic principles developed at EU level to assess obligations (...)

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

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

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

The German Competition Authority launches a sector inquiry into online price comparison websites
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt launches sector inquiry into comparison websites* The Bundeskartellamt has launched a sector inquiry into "online price comparison websites". Andreas Mundt, President of the Bundeskartellamt: "Every day millions of consumers gather information by using price comparison (...)

The French Supreme Court refers a case on online platform sales ban back to the Paris Court of Appeal without waiting for an upcoming ruling of the EU Court of Justice on a similar case (Caudalie / eNova)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 13 September 2017, the French Supreme Court ordered the Paris Court of Appeal to rehear a case for failing to sufficiently substantiate its finding that an obligation in Caudalie’s selective distribution system constituted a probable restriction of competition by object. In the selective (...)

The U.S. DOJ announces that an e-commerce company and its president have agreed to plead guilty to participating in a price-fixing conspiracy (Zaappaaz)
Jones Day (San Francisco)
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Jones Day (San Francisco)
Background Texas-based e-commerce company Zaappaaz, Inc.—doing business as WB Promotions, Inc., Wrist-Band.com, and Customlanyard.net—and its president both agreed to plead guilty to conspiring to fix prices for customized promotional products sold online in the United States, including (...)

The French Competition Authority launches a public consultation as part of its current sector-specific inquiry on online advertising
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Online advertising* As part of its current sector-specific inquiry on online advertising, the Autorité de la concurrence has launched a public consultation in order to collect stakeholder comments on several points. Stakeholders are asked to reply to the questionnaire sent out by the Autorité (...)

The Italian Competition Authority launches an inquiry into big data
Ashurst (Milan)
Big Data: Italian authorities launch inquiries on competition, consumer protection and data privacy issues* On 30 May 2017, the Italian Competition Authority, the Italian Data Protection Authority and the Communications Authority opened a joint inquiry on “Big Data”. Sector Inquiry The joint (...)

The EU Commission publishes its final report on the e-commerce sector inquiry
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
On 10 May 2017, two years after launching its e-commerce sector inquiry on 6 May 2015, the European Commission published its final report (Final Report) on the inquiry. The inquiry was opened in the framework of the Commission’s broader Digital Single Market strategy, which was aimed at (...)

The EU Commission publishes final e-commerce sector inquiry report
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 10 May 2017, the European Commission (“Commission”) published its final Report on the e-commerce sector inquiry (“the Report”), aimed at identifying business practices in the sector that might restrict competition and limit con- sumer choice. The Report consists of two documents: (i) a 16-page (...)

The EU Commission publishes its final report on the inquiry into the e-commerce sector
DLA Piper (Brussels)
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DLA Piper (London)
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DLA Piper
On 10 May 2017, DG Competition of the European Commission (the "Commission") published its final report on the inquiry into the e-commerce sector (launched in May 2015 as part of the Digital Single Market strategy). The findings in the report are based on information gathered from 1,900 (...)

The EU Commission issues a final report on its e-commerce sector enquiry and updates its digital single market plans
Norton Rose Fulbright (Brussels)
EU issues final report on its e-commerce sector inquiry and updates its digital single market plan* On May 10, 2017, the European Commission published the final report on its sector inquiry on competition in the e-commerce sector (the E-Commerce Report) and a mid-term review of its digital (...)

The EU Commission issues its final report on e-commerce sector
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission publishes final report on e-commerce sector inquiry* The European Commission’s final report on the e-commerce sector inquiry identifies business practices that may restrict competition. It allows the Commission to target its enforcement of EU antitrust rules in e-commerce (...)

The EU Commission publishes its final report on the e-commerce sector inquiry
Shearman & Sterling (London)
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Shearman & Sterling (Rome)
The European Commission has published, on 10 May, its final report on the E- commerce Sector Inquiry (the “Final Report”). The Commission launched the E-commerce Sector Inquiry in May 2015 in the context of its Digital Single Market (“DSM”) strategy, aiming to ensure better access for consumers (...)

The EU Commission accepts commitments to remove most favoured nation clauses from e-book distribution agreements (Amazon)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 4 May 2017, the European Commission (“Commission”) announced that it had accepted, pursuant to Article 9 of Regulation (EC) No.1/2003, to make binding commitments that Amazon offered ending the use of parity clauses in distribution agreements with electronic book (“e-book”) publishers. These (...)

The Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court confirms that the general prohibition of the use of price comparison engines by retailers violates competition law (Asics)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court confirms Bundeskartellamt’s decision on prohibition of use of price comparison engines* Yesterday the Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court confirmed the Bundeskartellamt’s decision of principle against the running shoes manufacturer Asics. According to the decision the (...)

The UK Competition Authority publishes preliminary findings on price comparison websites
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (London)
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Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (London)
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Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (London)
In September 2016, the Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA”) launched a Market Study into digital comparison tools (“DCTs”). On March 28, 2017, the CMA published an update on the Market Study setting out its preliminary findings and areas of focus for the second part of the Market Study. The (...)

The Madrid Commercial Court dismisses a lawsuit for unfair competition stating that a platform that focuses exclusively on private transport is not subject to transportation regulations (CONFEBUS / Blablacar)
Callol, Coca & Asociados (Madrid)
A First Instance Commercial Court dismisses the lawsuit filed against Blablacar for unfair competition stating that Blablacar is a platform that focuses exclusively on private transport and is therefore not subject to transportation regulations (Judgement of the Commercial Court of 2 February (...)

The Turkish Competition Board concludes its investigation against an online booking platform (Booking.com)
Erdem & Erdem (Istanbul)
Introduction The Competition Board (“Board”) concluded its investigation with regard to the booking services provided by Booking.com B.V. (“Booking.com”) and by Bookingdotcom Destek Hizmetleri Limited Liability Company. During its investigation, the Board has evaluated whether Articles 4 and 6 of (...)

The US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit considers potential discrimination between taxis and transportation network providers (Illinois Transport Association / City of Chicago)
Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (Warsaw)
Sharing and traditional economy: matter of substitutability ... between cats and dogs?* Sharing economy firms are disrupting traditional industries across the globe. As Tom Goodwin once put it: “Uber, the world’s largest taxi company, owns no vehicles. Facebook, the world’s most popular media (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority launches a market inquiry on online platforms
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (The Hague)
Taking a closer look at online video platforms* The Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) has launched a market study into online platforms that offer videos and movies. Think of YouTube and Facebook, but also Dutch platforms such as NL-ziet and Dumpert. "We will be taking a (...)

The EU Commission publishes the initial findings of its e-commerce sector inquiry
Hogan Lovells (Brussels)
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Hogan Lovells (Munich)
European Commission’s e-commerce sector inquiry - increasing anti-trust heat* Online sales are not only attracting the attention of consumers and tech businesses, but also increased review by antitrust regulators. On 15 September 2016, the European Commission published a detailed 290 page (...)

The EU Commission publishes initial findings of e-commerce sector inquiry report
Bydgoszcz University of Technology and Life Sciences (UOKIK)
On 15 September 2016, the European Commission published a preliminary report on its initial findings in the e-commerce sector inquiry, aimed at identifying business practices in the sector that might restrict competition and limit consumer choice. This development follows the Commission’s report (...)

The UK Competition Authority fines a company specialized in online sales of posters and frames for cartel (Trod)
British Competition Authority - CMA (London)
CMA issues final decision in online cartel case* The CMA has today issued a formal decision that 2 online sellers of posters and frames broke competition law. This follows the announcement on 21 July 2016 that Trod Ltd had admitted agreeing with GB eye Ltd (trading as ‘GB Posters’) that they (...)

The UK Competition and Markets Authority fines online retailers for using automated repricing software to implement an illegal cartel (Trod / GB Posters)
British Competition Authority - CMA (London)
Online seller admits breaking competition law* An online seller has agreed to accept a fine after admitting using automated repricing software to implement an illegal cartel. Trod Limited has admitted agreeing with one of its competing online sellers, GB eye Limited (trading as ‘GB Posters’), (...)

The Frankfurt Court of Appeals submits preliminary reference on how to treat bans on sales via third-party internet platforms in selective distribution systems (Coty)
Sheppard Mullin (Brussels)
European Court of Justice to Rule on Legality of Online Sales Bans*An appeal court in Frankfurt has asked the European Court of Justiceto clarify the application of the competition rules to online sales. The Frankfurt court made its request in the context of a dispute between a leader in beauty (...)

The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority fines a company for retail price maintenance on online sales (ITW)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 24 May 2016, the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA”) fined ITW Limited, a supplier of refrigerators, £ 2,298,820 for retail price maintenance on online sales. From 2012 to 2014, ITW required dealers to adhere to its minimum advertised price policy for Foster commercial fridges and (...)

The French Competition Authority gathers informations to assess data processing in the on-line advertising sector
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence begins, at its own initiative, gathering information in order to assess data processing in the on-line advertising sector* The Autorité has decided, at its own initiative, to gather information with a view to assessing competition in the internet advertising sector (...)

The Lithuanian Supreme Administrative Court confirms that 29 travel agencies breached antitrust rules to limit discounts for travel packages (Eturas)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 4 May 2016, the Lithuanian Supreme Administrative Court (“Lithuanian Supreme Court”) confirmed that 29 travel agencies had breached antitrust rules when using an online booking system to limit discounts for travel packages. This judgment follows the ruling handed down by the Court of Justice (...)

The Frankfurt Court of Appeals submits preliminary reference on how to treat bans on sales via third-party internet platforms in selective distribution systems (Coty)
Heinz & Zagrosek (Köln)
Ban on sales via third-party internet platforms in Germany and Pierre Fabre – recent referral to the Court of Justice* The question of how to treat bans on sales via third-party internet platforms in selective distribution systems and the impact of the Court of Justice’s Pierre Fabre ruling (see (...)

The Frankfurt Court of Appeals refers how to treat bans on sales via third-party internet platforms to the European Court of Justice
McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
The question of how to treat bans on sales via third-party internet platforms in selective distribution systems and the impact of the Court of Justice’s Pierre Fabre ruling (see judgment of October 13, 2011, case C-439/09) have been on the agenda in Germany for some time. Recently, the Frankfurt (...)

The EU Commission presents its initial findings on geo-blocking with respect to consumer goods in e-commerce sector inquiry
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 18 March 2016, the European Commission published its initial findings of its sector inquiry into the e-commerce sector in relation to geo-blocking practices. The Commission de nes geo-blocking as commercial practices whereby online providers prevent users from accessing and purchasing (...)

The German Competition Authority opens proceedings in the audiobooks market (Audible / Amazon / Apple)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt opens proceedings against Audible/Amazon and Apple* The Bundeskartellamt has initiated administrative proceedings against the Amazon subsidiary Audible.com and Apple Computer Inc. The companies have a long-term agreement on the purchase of audiobooks by Apple from Audible for (...)

The Hellenic Competition Authority decides to not launch investigation in hotel market (Booking.com / Expedia)
Hellenic Competition Authority (Athens)
HCC decides not to proceed with a formal investigation into BOOKING & EXPEDIA’s cooperation agreements with hotel businesses in Greece * The Hellenic Competition Commission (HCC) reviewed the revised parity terms in the agreements between online travel agencies (OTAs) BOOKING.COM and (...)

The UK Competition Authority closes its hotel online booking investigation (Booking.com)
British Competition Authority - CMA (London)
CMA closes hotel online booking investigation* The CMA today announced that it has closed an investigation into suspected breaches of competition law in the hotel online booking sector. The investigation was launched by the Competition and Markets Authority’s (CMA) predecessor, the Office of (...)

The German Competition Authority condemns a manufacturer of running shoes for restricting the online sales activities of small and medium-sized authorised dealers (Asics)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Unlawful restriction of online sales of ASICS running shoes* The Bundeskartellamt has concluded its proceeding on anti-competitive clauses in the distribution system of ASICS Deutschland. The authority accuses ASICS of having restricted the online sales activities of small and medium-sized (...)

ECJ Advocate General Szpunar issues opinion on circumstances where the use of an online booking system by travel agents may amount to a concerted practice (Eturas)
Ashurst (Milan)
EU Court of Justice’s Advocate General issues opinion on circumstances where the use of an online booking system by travel agents may amount to a concerted practice* On 16 July 2015 Advocate General Szupnar handed down his opinion following a request for a preliminary ruling by the Court of (...)

The Polish Competition Authority accepts commitments concerning online sales of prams and strollers (Emmaljunga)
Hansberry Tomkiel (Warsaw)
In its decision no RGD 2/2015 of 30th June 2015 (the “Decision”), the Polish Office for Competition and Consumer Protection (“Competition Authority”) accepted commitments proposed by the Poland-based company “Investment Trading Consulting” (“Company”), Polish exclusive distributor of prams and (...)

European Competition Authorities adopt decisions on Most Favoured Nation clauses and rebate schemes that are relevant and applicable in the context of ASEAN competition law (Booking.com / Post Danmark)
Rajah & Tann (Singapore)
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Rajah & Tann (Singapore)
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McCarter & English (Washington)
Introduction As we move into the second half of the year, we examine two recent competition enforcement cases in Europe, and consider their relevance and applicability in the context of ASEAN competition law. Specifically, we discuss the position taken in Europe with regards to Most Favoured (...)

The Italian Competition Authority issues a commitment decision and closes an investigation regarding contracts concluded between online booking websites and their partner hotels (Online Hotel Reservation)
Desogus Law Office (Cagliari)
By a commitment decision made on 21 April 2015 in the Mercato dei Servizi Turistici-Prenotazione Alberghiere Online case (thereinfter Online Hotel Reservation) the Italian Competition Authority (ICA) has closed an Article 101 TFEU investigation against Booking. The ICA has launched the (...)

Internet and Antitrust: An overview of EU and national case law
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (London)
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Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (London)
I. Introduction This e-Competitions Special Issue collects articles on competition law developments relating to the Internet at national and EU levels, as authorities seek to apply antitrust principles to the new world of online services. The changes brought about by the Internet cut across (...)

The Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court upholds the decision of the Bundeskartellamt prohibiting the application of the "best price clause" in the online hotel booking sector (HRS / Expedia / Booking.com)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
HRS’s ‘best price’ clauses violate German and European competition law - Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court confirms Bundeskartellamt’s prohibition decision* Today the Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court rejected HRS’s appeal against the Bundeskartellamt’s decision of 20 December 2013. In its decision the (...)

A US District Court dismisses with prejudice a class action insofar as the class action’s plaintiffs have not overcome the pleading deficiencies following the first judicial review of their pleadings (OTC Hotel Booking)
Ashurst (Milan)
U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas dismissed Second Consolidated Amended Complaint against hotel chains and online travel agencies* On 28 October 2014 the U.S. District Court of the Northern District of Texas dismissed with prejudice a class action against hotel chains and (...)

The US FTC settles charges of two Internet resellers of UPC barcodes used by retailers for violation of the FTC Act by inviting competitors to collude to raise prices for barcodes sold over the Internet (680 Digital)
Steve Szentesi Law Corporation (Vancouver)
Scanner Emergency in Aisle Five: US FTC Settles Bar Code Seller Invitation to Collude Case* In an interesting case that caught my eye yesterday and today, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has proposed a settlement in a case involving allegations that an online bar code re-seller engaged (...)

The German Competition Authority closes proceedings after the company amended its conditions for online sales of sport shoes in such a way that they comply with competition law (Adidas)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Adidas abandons ban on sales via online market places* The Bundeskartellamt has closed its proceedings against adidas AG (adidas) after the company amended its conditions for online sales in such a way that they comply with competition law. adidas operates a selective distribution system (...)

The Italian Competition Authority launches an investigation for alleged vertical agreements entered into with their partner hotels in violation of Article 101(1) TFEU (Booking.com / Expedia)
NCTM - Studio Legale Associato (Milan)
On 7 May 2014, the Italian Competition Authority (Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato, the “Authority”) launched an investigation against Booking.com BV (hereinafter, “Booking”), Booking.com (Italia) S.r.l., Expedia Inc. (hereinafter, “Expedia”), and Expedia Italy S.r.l. for alleged (...)

The Canadian Competition Tribunal suspends the registration of the consent agreement pending the determination of application pursuant to Section 106(2) related to a price MFN clause on the market for e-books retail (Kobo)
Cassels Brock (Toronto)
The Ebooks Saga: Kobo’s challenge explained* Ebook retailer Kobo is challenging a settlement entered into by the Competition Bureau with ebook publishers. The settlement has been stayed pending this challenge. Kobo’s challenge may have major implications for competition law enforcement in (...)

The German Competition Authority finds that a selective distribution system, which allows for the sale of running shoes to final customers only via authorised dealers poses a number of serious restraints to competition (Asics)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt takes a critical view of restriction of online distribution by ASICS* After a preliminary examination the Bundeskartellamt has found that the selective distribution system of ASICS Deutschland, which allows for the sale of running shoes to final customers only via authorised (...)

The Paris Court of Appeal reduces by almost 99 percent the penalty imposed by the French Competition Authority on a manufacturer for prohibiting the sale of its products online to the members of its selective distribution network (Bang & Olufsen)
Magenta (Paris)
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Dechert (Paris)
In its judgment of March 13, 2014, the Paris Court of appeal (Court of Appeal) reduced by almost 99 per cent the penalty imposed by the French Competition Authority (FCA) on Bang & Olufsen (B&O) in its decision of December 12, 2012 (Decision) for having, since 2001, prohibited the (...)

The Danish Public Prosecutor for Serious Economic and International Crime enters into settlements with owners of driving schools in a cartel case (Driving schools)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
On 28 February 2014, the Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (“DCCA”) announced in a press release that the owners of five driving schools had entered into a settlement with the Public Prosecutor for Serious Economic and International Crime (“PSEIC”) for infringing section 6 of the Danish (...)

The US District Court of Dallas dismisses a class action lawsuit filed by an online travel discount company against 12 dominant hotel chains and 9 online travel agencies alledging unfair exclusion from the market (OTC / Hotel Booking)
Ashurst (Milan)
U.S. District Judge in Texas dismisses class action lawsuit against conspiracy by online travel agencies and hotels to fix the price of hotel rooms* On 18 February 2014, U.S. District Judge Jane Boyle of the Northern District of Texas Dallas Division dismissed a class action lawsuit that (...)

The US District Court of Dallas dismisses antitrust claims because plaintiffs did not plausibly state an agreement on the market for direct online sale of hotel room reservations leaving the question of potential anticompetitive effect of the most favored nation (MFN) clause without an answer (OTC / Hotel Booking)
University of Michigan
OTA Case Turns Out to Be Less about MFNs and More about Agreement* Back in September 2012, the potential anticompetitive aspects of most favored nation (MFN) clauses was the hot antitrust topic. While antitrust counselors (and courts) had found the clauses to be innocuous almost all the time, (...)

The UK OFT accepts commitments from online travel agents enabling them and the hotels to offer discounts on rates for hotel rooms (Booking.com)
Ashurst (Milan)
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 German Competition Authority forbids the application of most favoured nation clause and orders its removal from the contracts between hotels and booking portals (HRS / Expedia / Booking.com)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Online hotel portal HRS’s ’best price’ clause violates competition law – Proceedings also initiated against other hotel portals* Bonn, 20 December 2013: Today the Bundeskartellamt prohibited HRS from continuing to apply its ’best price’ clause (most favoured nation clause) and ordered the company to (...)

The UK OFT opens consultation on the revised commitments proposed by online travel agencies (Booking.com / Expedia)
Ashurst (Milan)
UK OFT weighs revised commitments in the online hotel accommodation bookings* On 20 December 2013, the United Kingdom’s Office of Fair Trading (“OFT”) opened a consultation on the revised commitments proposed by Booking.com B.V. (“Booking.com”), Expedia Inc (“Expedia”) and InterContinental Hotels (...)

The German Competition Authority issues a press release concerning its decision to prohibit the hotel booking portal from continuing to apply its “best price” clause (HRS / Expedia / Booking.com)
Ashurst (Milan)
German Federal Cartel Office bans use of MFN clauses by HRS and opens new proceedings against Booking.com and Expedia* On 20 December 2013, Germany’s Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) issued a press release concerning its decision to prohibit the hotel booking portal HRS from continuing to apply its (...)

The EU General Court rules on the boundaries of the duty to state reasons in decisions addressed to tenderers whose offers are rejected in public procurement procedures (UAB Gaumina / EIGE)
University of Bristol - Law School
Of lost emails, the duty to state reasons and a dimming light in the horizon of eProcurement (T-424/12)* In its Judgment of 28 November 2013 in case T-424/12 UAB Gaumina v Institut européen pour l’égalité entre les hommes et les femmes (EIGE), the General Court has ruled once more on the (...)

The German Federal Cartel Office closes its investigation against online book trader into the “price parity” clauses (Amazon)
Ashurst (Milan)
Amazon Marketplace ends price parity* On 26 November 2013, Germany’s Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) issued a press release stating that it has closed the investigation into Amazon’s “price parity” clauses applied in agreements with traders that operated on its Marketplace platform. In fact, on 27 and (...)

The German Competition Authority closes its proceedings against online book trader for enforcing price parity clauses on its marketplace platform (Amazon)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Amazon abandons price parity clauses for good* 26 November 2013: The Bundeskartellamt has today terminated its proceedings against Amazon for enforcing price parity clauses on its Marketplace platform after the company had met the requirements set by the authority. Andreas Mundt, President of (...)

The ECN Working Group on Competition Law gathers in Bonn to discuss matters related to vertical restraints in the internet economy
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Vertical Restraints in the Internet Economy - Meeting of the Working Group on Competition Law in Bonn* Bonn, 14 October 2013: On 10 October 2013 the Working Group on Competition Law met in Bonn at the invitation of the Bundeskartellamt. At this year’s meeting more than 100 competition law (...)

The Danish Competition and Consumer Authority publishes a report on parcel deliveries to consumers
European Commission (Brussels)
Denmark: Expensive to send small Consignments in Denmark* The Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (DCCA) published a report on parcel deliveries to consumers on 27 September 2013. Several providers offer competing services in the Danish market and competition has intensified in recent (...)

The UK OFT issues draft commitments in an investigation into the sector for hotel online booking (IHG / Expedia / Booking.com)
Accenture (Dublin)
Hotel Online Booking: The OFT announces its intention to accept binding commitments* On 9 August 2013, the OFT issued draft commitments in the Hotel Online Booking investigation. The OFT has investigated the relevant markets for over 2 years and has provisionally found that certain hotels (...)

The UK OFT establishes vertical restrictions on the market for supply of mobility scooters, though no fines can be imposed (Roma Medical Aids)
Max Findlay Associates (London)
Not playing nicely* Recently, there have been two striking cases of organisations behaving badly in a way that the outside world would think was well out of order. In the first example – the Roma Medical Aids case – it isn’t just about somebody breaking the rules. It’s about a company acting in a (...)

The Hungarian Competition Authority initiates a sector inquiry on the online room reservation market of the tourism sector
Hungarian Competition Authority (Budapest)
Sector inquiry on the market of online room reservations* Pursuant to Article 43/C of the Competition Act, the Hungarian Competition Authority (GVH) has initiated a sector inquiry on the online room reservation market of the tourism sector in order to familiarise itself with and evaluate the (...)

The German Competition Authority expresses concerns about best price clauses for operator of internet platform (HRS-Hotel Reservation Service)
European Commission (Brussels)
Germany: The Bundeskartellamt expresses Concerns about Best Price Clauses for Operator of Internet Platform* On 25 July 2013, the Bundeskartellamt (BKartA) addressed a second statement of objections to HRS-Hotel Reservation Service Robert Ragge GmbH, Cologne (HRS), a hotel booking platform. A (...)

The German Competition Authority continues to view the best price clause used by a hotel booking portal in a critical manner (HRS)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt continues to view HRS’s best price clause critically* The Bundeskartellamt has confirmed its competition concerns about the best price clause used by the hotel booking portal HRS. After examining the statements of HRS and all other relevant market participants, the (...)

The French Competition Authority carries out an inquiry in the area of prescription medicine distribution in private practices
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Press Release published on the official website of the French Competition Authority. The Autorité de la concurrence is submitting to public consultation an initial assessment in which it has identified several potential sticking points* Medicinal products are the second-largest (...)

The US Court of Appeals for 9th Circuit finds an operator of several BitTorrent websites liable for contributory copyright infringement on an inducement theory (Columbia Pictures/Gary Fung)
Sideman & Bancroft (San Francisco)
U.S. Appeals Court for the 9th Circuit finds BitTorrent operator liable for contributory infringement on an inducement theory (Columbia Picture v. Fung)* On 21 March 2013, the U.S. 9th Circuit affirmed in part and vacated in part the California Central District Court decision that Gary Fung, (...)

The German Competition Authority launches a web survey targeting 2,400 sellers who offer their products on major internet platform (Amazon Marketplace)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt surveys Amazon Marketplace sellers* Today the Bundeskartellamt launched a web survey of 2,400 sellers who offer their products through Amazon Marketplace. Within the framework of administrative proceedings under competition law the Bundeskartellamt is examining the effects of (...)

The Paris Court of Appeal dismisses an action from a cosmetics manufacturer against a decision of the French Competition Authority that sanctioned it for prohibiting its authorised distributors from Internet sales (Pierre Fabre Dermo-Cosmétique)
Kalliopé Société d’Avocats (Paris)
On 31 January 2013, the Paris Court of Appeal ("the Court") dismissed an action by Pierre Fabre Dermo-Cosmétique SAS ("Pierre Fabre") against a decision of the French Competition Authority ("the FCA") dated 29 October 2008 ("the Decision") ordering Pierre Fabre to amend its selective (...)

The Paris Court of Appeal rules that dermo-cosmetic products do not have objective properties justifying the prohibition of their sale on the Internet (Pierre Fabre)
Vogel & Vogel (Paris)
In answer to the question of whether a general and absolute ban on selling cosmetics and personal care products online constitutes a hardcore restriction of competition by object, the European Court of Justice said that yes it did, if "having regard to the properties of the products at issue, (...)

The U.S. FTC applies questionable principles to the enforcement of fair reasonable and non discriminatory - obligated SEPs through injunction in its settlement with leading web search engine (Google)
International Center for Law & Economics (Portland)
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International Center for Law & Economics (Portland)
Introduction In January of 2013, the Federal Trade Commission and Google (acting through its subsidiary, Motorola Mobility) signed a Consent Order ending the agency’s investigation into a number of practices. Much of the Order is aimed at imposing antitrust-based limits on the allowable process (...)

The German Competition Authority fines two major TV broadcasting groups and two individuals for entering into anticompetitive agreements when they introduced the encryption of their digital free TV programmes (Pro7Sat1 and RTL)
European Commission (Brussels)
Germany: The Bundeskartellamt imposes Fines on Pro7Sat1 and RTL on account of Agreements on basic Encryption of TV Programmes and secures unencrypted SD TV* On 28 December 2012 the Bundeskartellamt (BKartA) imposed fines totalling approximately € 55 000 000 on the two major German TV (...)

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 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 French Competition Authority fines a manufacturer which prohibited internet sales by its distributors (Bang & Olufsen)
Google (Paris)
Ten years! It took no less than ten years to decide whether it is lawful for a manufacturer to prevent online sales to its distributors. Compared to the speed at which businesses evolve on the internet, that is as if the conduct subject to scrutiny lasted half a century… In February 2002, the (...)

The Danish Appeals Tribunal gives judgment on anti-competitive collective boycott in Danish real estate market (Boliga.dk)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 20 November 2012, the Danish Appeals Tribunal handed down a judgment on appeals brought by six Danish cooperative chains of independent real estate agents against a decision by the Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (“DCCA”) of 25 January 2012 finding that the companies had been (...)

The UK OFT issues statement of objections against two online travel agents and one hotels group for alleged restrictive practices (Booking.com / Expedia / Intercontinental Hotels)
European Commission (Brussels)
United Kingdom: The Office of Fair Trading issues Statement of Objections against Booking.com, Expedia and Intercontinental Hotels Group* On 31 July 2012, the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) issued a Statement of Objections alleging that Booking. com B.V. (Booking.com), Expedia Inc (Expedia) and (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Authority fines tours operators and travel agents for concerted practices relating to online sale of package tours (Eturas)
European Commission (Brussels)
Lithuania: The Competition Council imposes Fine of more than € 1 500 000 for Anti-competitive Practice relating to Online Sale of Package Tours* On 7 June 2012, the Competition Council of the Republic of Lithuania (the CC) adopted a decision in which 30 tour operators/travel agents were fined (...)

Internet and Antitrust: An overview of EU and national case law
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (London)
,
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Brussels)
I. Introduction The last decade has seen Internet-based “disruptive innovation” in many sectors of the economy, not least communications, media, advertising and retail. This unprecedented development has brought about changes that would have been unimaginable until very recently: Websites, (...)

The French Supreme Court rules on selective distribution networks and outside-network sales made on online auction website (eBay)
Vogel & Vogel (Paris)
Four perfume brands have filed a legal action against the world’s number-one online auction site, eBay: they accuse eBay of allowing on its sites the sale by non-authorized third parties of products covered by a selective distribution channel. The judge found that eBay, a site bringing together (...)

The European Court of Justice rules that absolute bans on Internet sales are prohibited (Pierre Fabre Dermo-Cosmetique)
Vogel & Vogel (Paris)
In 2006, the French Competition Council (Conseil de la concurrence) initiated proceedings regarding practices in the cosmetics and personal care products distribution sector after finding that the majority of manufacturers required that sales be carried out only in a physical space and always (...)

The New York Southern District Court holds that enforcement of a Minimum Advertised Price (MAP) policy against Internet retailers does not amount to minimum resale price maintenance (Worldhomecenter.com / Franke Consumer Products)
Pepper Hamilton (Philadelphia)
,
Pepper Hamilton (Philadelphia)
Courts May Try to Harmonize Federal and State Law on the Legality of Resale Price Maintenance* Ever since the United States Supreme Court ruled in Leegin Creative Leather Products, Inc. v. PSKS, Inc., 551 U.S. 877 (2007), that resale price maintenance (i.e., agreements to set minimum resale (...)

The ECJ Advocate General Mazak recommends that prohibition on internet sales be per se infringement (Pierre Fabre Dermo-Cosmétique)
Jones Day (Brussels)
,
Jones Day (Brussels)
,
Jones Day (Dusseldorf)
On March 3, 2011, Advocate General (AG) Mazák delivered an opinion to the European Court of Justice (ECJ) in Pierre Fabre Dermo-Cosmétique SAS (PFDC). PFDC, a French manufacturer of cosmetics and personal care products, prohibited its retailers from selling via the Internet. AG Mazák advised the (...)

The Paris Court of Appeal reduces damages awarded for sales of perfumes through a website by unauthorised distributors (eBay, Parfums Christian Dior, Kenzo Parfums, Parfums Givenchy, and Guerlain)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 3 September 2010, the Paris Court of Appeal delivered its judgment in a case between eBay and SA Parfums Christian Dior, SA Kenzo Parfums, SA Parfums Givenchy, and SA Guerlain (which are perfume and cosmetics suppliers belonging to the LVMH group – hereinafter the “LVMH group”). On 30 June (...)

The German Competition Authority imposes fine of € 2.5 M for resale price maintenance concerning Internet sales of GPS systems (Garmin)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
According to a press release of 28 June 2010, the German Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) has imposed a total fine of € 2.5 million on Garmin Deutschland GmbH (“Garmin”), a manufacturer of mobile navigation devices (e.g., GPS systems), and one of its employees, for engaging in resale price maintenance (...)

The French Competition Authority accepts commitments in order to address competition concerns in the discount coupons sector (HighCo / Sogec / Perifem)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence accepts commitments enabling all market operators to use Webcoupon or to develop equivalent solutions.* After a referreal by the Institut de liaisons et d’études des industries de consommation (ILEC), and the company Ma Liste de Courses (MLDC), which complained of (...)

The European Commission publishes new rules for vertical agreements
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
,
Dentons (Brussels)
On April 20, 2010, the European Commission (the Commission) adopted its new, long-awaited Vertical Block Exemption Regulation (the VBER) and accompanying guidelines applicable to distribution agreements in the EU. The VBER, which will enter into force on June 1, 2010, replaces Regulation (...)

The US DoJ issues business review letter regarding a proposed Internet media subscription news aggregation service (Global News Service)
Stanford University - Stanford Law School
U.S. Department of Justice does not challenge online subscription news service* On 24 February 2010 the Department of Justice issued a business review letter regarding a proposed Internet media subscription news aggregation service (Global News Service) that would be operated by MyWire, Inc. (...)

The US DoJ closes investigation into the proposed Internet search and search advertising agreement (Microsoft - Yahoo!)
Stanford University - Stanford Law School
U.S. Department of Justice closes investigation into Microsoft-Yahoo! agreement* On 18 February 2010 the U.S. Department of Justice announced the closing of its investigation into the proposed Internet search and search advertising agreement between Microsoft Corporation and Yahoo! Inc. (see (...)

The US DoJ remains concerned over coordination and exclusivity issues in proposed amended settlement among publishers and authors (Google Books)
Stanford University - Stanford Law School
U.S. Department of Justice remains concerned over antitrust issues raised by “Google Books” settlement* On 4 February 2010 the U.S. Department of Justice filed a statement of interest regarding the proposed amended settlement agreement in The Authors Guild Inc. et al. v. Google Inc. with the (...)

A German Court confirms judgment allowing a restriction on using auction websites in selective distribution
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
In its judgment of 25 November 2009, the Higher Regional Court of Karlsruhe (the “Court”) upheld a judgment of the Regional Court of Mannheim which allowed the manufacturer of high quality school bags which operated a qualitative selective distribution system to prohibit its distributors from (...)

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 issues an opinion on the review of EC Regulation 2790/99 and of the European guidelines on vertical restraints
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Press Release published on the official website of the French Competition Authority. The Autorité de la concurrence welcomes the modernization undertaken by the European Commission and recommends that the Commission better explains the balance it intends to guarantee between online trade and (...)

The German Federal Cartel Office imposes a fine on the market leader in the wholesale supply of contact lenses for having inter alia employed an internal price maintenance program, including the systematic monitoring of retail prices for contact lenses and the exertion of pressure, the granting of advantages as well as agreements and concerted practices with Internet dealers (CIBA Vision)
Linklaters (Dusseldorf)
Description of the impugned case The FCO found various measures under CIBA’s price maintenance program, that in the view of the FCO amounted to a fixing of minimum resale prices. In particular, the FCO considered an infringement of Article 81 EC (now Art. 101 TFEU) and the corresponding German (...)

The German Federal Cartel Office fines € 11.5 million a contact lens provider for fixing minimum resale prices and restricting Internet and wholesale sales of its products (CIBA)
Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson (London)
On September 25, 2009, the German Federal Cartel Office (FCO) levied a fine of €11.5 million against contact lens provider CIBA Vision Vertriebs GmbH (CIBA) for fixing minimum resale prices and restricting Internet and wholesale sales of its products. This is the third decision imposed by the (...)

The European Commission publishes for consultation drafts of the vertical agreements block exemption regulation and vertical guidelines
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 28 July 2009, the European Commission published for consultation a draft of the proposed new Vertical Agreements Block Exemption Regulation (VABER) and its accompanying draft Vertical Guidelines. Interested parties are invited to submit comments on these documents by 28 September 2009. The (...)

The French Competition Authority issues opinion on exclusivity agreements between pay TV operators and Internet service providers
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 7 July 2009, following a request of the French Minister of Economy, the French Competition Authority issued an opinion concerning exclusivity agreements between pay TV operators and Internet service providers. Among the various issues raised, the Minister referred to the so-called «double (...)

A German Court accepts prohibition of selling through auction websites (Amer)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
In a recently published judgment of 2 July 2009, the Higher Regional Court of Munich (the “Court”) found that a manufacturer of sports products (Amer) was allowed to prohibit its distributors to resell its products through auction websites, such as eBay. Amer had been sued by the German (...)

A German court rules on restrictions on sales through auction websites in the context of selective distribution (Sternjakob)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
In a judgment of 21 April 2009, the Regional Court of Berlin (the Court) concluded that restrictions on sales through eBay imposed by a supplier of school bags on its selective distributors would be anti-competitive. According to this judgment, Sternjakob, a manufacturer of school bags, had (...)

A French Court rules that search engines are not liable for the way a company is presented in their search results (Publison System v. Google France & Yahoo France)
Google (Paris)
A French firm discovered that results returned by major search tools pointed to excerpts of a website criticizing it. It sued the search tools, claiming they were disparaging. A French court of appeals finds that this neither constitutes unfair competition nor gives rise to liability. Facts (...)

The Paris Court of Appeal suspends decision concerning prohibition of Internet sales in selective distribution (Pierre Fabre)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 18 February 2009, the President of the Paris Court of Appeal partially suspended the decision of the French Competition Council against a manufacturer of cosmetics, Pierre Fabre Dermo-Cosmétique (“Pierre Fabre”). In its decision of 29 October 2008, the Competition Council found that Pierre (...)

The French NCA fines a cosmetics manufacturer for prohibiting its selective distributors from selling its products on the Internet (Pierre Fabre Dermo-Cosmétique)
Simmons & Simmons (Paris)
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Hewlett Packard (Boulogne-Billancourt)
On 29 October 2008, the French French Competition Council (Conseil de la concurrence) (the “Council") fined Pierre Fabre Dermo-Cosmétique, a cosmetics and personal hygiene products manufacturer, 17,000 Euros for having prohibited its selective distributors from selling products made by its (...)

The French NCA sanctions the prohibition of Internet sales imposed on the members of a selective distribution network, under Art. 81.1 EC (Pierre Fabre Dermo-cosmétique)
White & Case (Paris)
In a decision n° 08-D-25 dated 29 October 2008 (hereinafter the “Decision”), the French Competition Council sanctioned Pierre Fabre Dermo-cosmétique for prohibiting its selected distributors from selling personal care and cosmetic products under the Klorane, Avène, Ducray and Galénic brands on the (...)

The Paris Commercial Court orders a search engine and an online advertiser to pay damages to a company whose name and domain name have both been used in the Adwords program (Cobrason / Google, Home Ciné Solutions)
EDHEC (Lille)
Google France and Home Ciné Solutions (HCS) have been sued in France by Cobrason before the Commercial Court (Tribunal de commerce) of Paris. Cobrason claims that HCS is using both its company title (Cobrason) and its domain name (Cobrason.com) in the form of keywords it had purchased from (...)

The Paris Commercial Court condemns a leading auction website to pay damages to perfume makers for a violation of their selective distribution networks (eBay)
Altana Law (Paris)
On 30 June 2008, the Commercial Court of Paris (Tribunal de Commerce de Paris) rendered three important decisions condemning the international auction website eBay mainly for its participation to an infringement of the IP rights of six manufacturers of luxury products belonging to the Louis (...)

The Paris Commercial Court finds a leading brokerage platform for remote electronic bidding liable for the infringement of selective distribution networks and unlawful acts committed against perfumers on its sites (eBay)
Vogel & Vogel (Paris)
Four perfumers sue eBay, the world’s foremost brokerage platform for remote electronic bidding, for having permitted, in violation of their rights, the sale of products marketed through unauthorized channels and counterfeit sales on its sites. eBay disputed the competence of the French courts (...)

A French Court of appeal rejects a request to forbid Internet resellers to sell a supplier’s products considering that the legality of its exclusive distribution network is not established (Brandalley / Over Stock / Puma)
Weil, Gotshal & Manges (Paris)
French courts are more and more solicited by suppliers claiming that online resellers or platforms violate their selective and/or exclusive distribution networks. We all remember the decisions recently rendered by the Paris commercial court in favour of LVMH against ebay . In a similar case, (...)

The Paris Court of Appeal confirms the possibility for a fragrance manufacturer to exclude pure players and to restrict internet sales within its selective distribution network (PMC Distribution / Pacific Création)
Kramer Levin Naftalis & Frankel (Paris)
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Eversheds Sutherland (Paris)
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Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe (Paris)
Facts and Ruling In the present case, the dispute arose between Pacific Creation, a fragrance manufacturer and retailer and PMC Distribution (PMC), a pure player which offers branded products exclusively on the Internet. In France, Pacific Creation‘s fragrances are retailed through a selective (...)

The Paris Court of Appeal upholds the legality of two restrictions on Internet sales by authorised retailers within a selective distribution network (PMC Distribution / Pacific Création)
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (Paris)
,
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (Paris)
In its decision dated 18 April 2008, S.A.R.L. PMC Distribution vs. S.A.S. Pacific Création, the Paris Court of Appeal (the "Court") takes part in the debate on the legal regime of Internet sales within selective distribution systems. Pacific Création, an undertaking which manufactures and (...)

The French Competition Authority accepts the commitments taken by 10 companies of the cosmetic industry to introduce more competition into online sale of their products (Bioderma & Rogé Cavaillès)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Press Release published on the official website of the French Competition Authority. Conseil de la concurrence facilitates online sale of cosmetic products: 10 companies of the cosmetic industry committed to introduce more competition into online sale of their products.* The Conseil de la (...)

The French Competition Council accepts commitments to modify selective distribution agreements as regards access to the network and advertising on the Internet (Festina)
AptarGroup (Paris)
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SNCF Mobilités (Paris)
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 Paris Court of First Instance rules rules on the anticompetitive effect of a patent infringement collective complaint lodged against a search engine’s adwords system (Gifam / Google)
University Paris II Panthéon‑Assas
AdWords is Google’s flagship advertising product, and its main source of revenue. It offers pay-per-click advertising, and site-targeted advertising for both text and banner ads. But many of the words sold by Google to its clients are registered trademarks and Google has been recently facing (...)

The Dutch District Court of Zutphen holds in an interim judgment that the Vertical Restraints Block Exemption Reg. n° 2790/99 covers the application of dissimilar terms and conditions of supply to internet retailers (Groen Trend & Schouten Keukens / AEP Home Products)
The AES Corporation (Amsterdam)
In December 2005 interim proceedings were brought before the District Court of Zutphen in a dispute between AEP Home Products (“AEP”), a supplier of kitchen appliances of the brands Atag, Etna and Pelgrim, and two of its buyers namely the internet retailer Groen Trend and the specialist shop (...)

The French Competition Authority rejects a request for interim measures submitted to address alleged competition concerns in the sector for on-line travel deals (Lastminute.com)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Press Release published on the official website of the French Competition Authority. On-line travel deals - The Conseil de la concurrence rejects a request for interim measures submitted by the company Lastminute.com, but pursues the investigation of the case on the merits.* On 25th June (...)

The European Commission exempts a standard agreement entered into by a number of copyright administration societies from Europe, South America, Asia and New Zealand (IFPI Simulcasting)
University of Lisbon
"From discothèques to websites, a new approach to music copyright licensing: the Simulcasting decision"* On 8 October 2002 the Commission adopted a decision in case COMP/C2/38.014 IFPI Simulcasting exempting a standard agreement entered into by a number of copyright administration societies (...)

The European Commission investigates the amended agreements underlying the creation of an online travel agency on the basis of Articles 81 and 82 in order to uncover any possible restrictions of competition, in particular in the (online) travel agency services market and the ISP/portal markets (T-Online international, TUI, Thomas Cook)
European Court of Justice (Luxembourg)
,
DG Economic and Financial Affairs (ECFIN) (Brussels)
"Internet Joint Ventures and the Quest for Exclusive Content: The T-Online Cases"* Introduction EC and national competition law issues arising from the marketing of ‘premium’ content, such as travel services and sports news, via the Internet were at the centre of several recent competition (...)

Dominance

The French Competition Authority issues an opinion concluding its sector-specific investigation into online advertising
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Sector-specific investigation into online advertising* The Autorité de la concurrence has made public its opinion in which it analyses a very complex market characterised by a fragile competitive equilibrium. Given the concerns of stakeholders in the sector, the General Rapporteur announced (...)

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

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

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

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

The Dutch Competition Authority, after its market study into online video platforms, finds no dominant market power among online video streaming platforms (Youtube)
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (The Hague)
No dominant market power among online video streaming platforms* The Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) has conducted a market study into online video platforms such as YouTube, Facebook, Netflix, and Dumpert. ACM did not find any indications for anticompetitive risks on the (...)

The EU Commission imposes a record fine for abuse of dominance in the search engine market (Google Shopping)
Simmons & Simmons (London)
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Simmons & Simmons (London)
,
Simmons & Simmons (London)
Introduction On 27 June 2017, the European Commission (the Commission) imposed a record €2.42bn fine on Google after finding it had abused its dominant position in the search engine market by giving favourable treatment to its comparison shopping service in its search results. Background (...)

The Russian Competition Authority announces the payment of a fine by a multinational technology undertaking following a settlement (Google)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
Google paid the fine* On 9 May 2017 Google Inc. Paid a 438,067,400 RUB administrative fine imposed by the Federal Antimonopoly Service. On 17 April 2017 the 2-year dispute between the Federal Antimonopoly Service and “Google” ended in an amicable settlement reached at the Arbitration Court of (...)

The Russian Competition Authority concludes an amicable settlement with a multinational technology company (Google)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
FAS terminated administrative proceedings against Google* The decisions was due to an amicable settlement reached between the antimonopoly authority and the company On 25 April 2017, the Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS Russia) terminated the proceedings against Google opened for failure to (...)

The French Competition Authority conducts an initial intermediary assessment of the commitments made by an online accommodation booking company (Booking.com)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence conducts an initial intermediary assessment of the commitments made by Booking.com.* The Autorité has not ruled out the possibility of issuing an opinion at its own initiative if the change in competition so requires, and is actively contributing to all of the (...)

The Commission seeks feedback on commitments proposed by an electronic commerce company in e-book investigation (Amazon)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission seeks feedback on commitments offered by Amazon in e-book investigation* The European Commission is inviting comments on commitments offered by Amazon to address competition concerns relating to parity clauses in contracts with publishers. The clauses may breach EU (...)

The German Competition Authority closes its proceeding against companies operating on the digital audio-books market suspected to abuse of dominance (Apple and Amazon)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt closes proceedings against Audible/Amazon and Apple* The Bundeskartellamt has closed its administrative proceedings against Audible.com – a subsidiary of Amazon – and Apple Computer Inc. Following a complaint by the German Publishers and Booksellers Association (Börsenverein des (...)

The Paris Commercial Court declares void price and availability parity clauses formerly implemented by a hotel online booking company (Booking.com)
DLA Piper (Paris)
In a ruling issued on November 29th, 2016, the Paris commercial court (hereafter the “court”) declared void several provisions, including price and availability parity clauses previously in force, of Booking.com’s general terms of service governing its B2B relationships with hotels. Following an (...)

The Belgian Competition Authority closes its investigation regarding a real estate website due to remedies offered by the undertaking (Immoweb)
Belgian Competition Authority (Brussels)
The Investigation and Prosecution Service of the Belgian Competition Authority has closed its investigation against Immoweb due to commitments offered by Immoweb* On January 30 2015, the Investigation and Prosecution Service opened an ex officio investigation against Immoweb, the company (...)

The Canadian Competition Tribunal denies leave to commence a private application in a refusal to deal case (CarGurus)
Cassels Brock (Toronto)
Used car listing website operator CarGurus Inc.’s attempt to force rival Trader Corporation to supply it with vehicle listing data has encountered a dead end as the Competition Tribunal denied it leave to commence a private application under several provisions of the Competition Act. This (...)

The Italian Competition Authority, in partnership with the EU Commission and nine other NCAs, monitors the impact of the measures undertaken in online hotel booking sector
Italian Competition Authority
Monitoring launched in online hotel booking sector* Monitoring the impact of the new parity clauses in the contracts with online travel agencies by the Italian Competition Authority in partnership with 9 other National Competition Authorities The Italian Competition Authority (AGCM), in (...)

The Portuguese Competition Authority sends a statement of objections to a company specialized in standard mail services suspected to abuse of dominance (CTT)
Portuguese Competition Authority (Lisbon)
The Portuguese Competition Authority sends Statement of Objections to CTT – Correios de Portugal S.A.* The Portuguese Competition Authority (Autoridade da Concorrência – AdC) confirms having sent a Statement of Objections to CTT – Correios de Portugal S.A. (CTT) outlining its preliminary view that (...)

The EU Commission considers comparison shopping services and advertising related practices (Google AdSens)
International Center for Law & Economics (Portland)
Everything is amazing - and no-one at the European Commission is happy* Since the European Commission (EC) announced its first inquiry into Google’s business practices in 2010, the company has been the subject of lengthy investigations by courts and competition agencies around the globe. (...)

The EU Commission takes further steps concerning the case involving comparison shopping services and advertising-related practices (Google AdSens)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission takes further steps in investigations alleging Google’s comparison shopping and advertising-related practices breach EU rules* The Commission has sent two Statements of Objections to Google. The Commission has reinforced, in a supplementary Statement of Objections, its (...)

The French Competition starts, in collaboration with 9 National Competition Authorities and the EU Commission, a survey among hoteliers to assess the remedies implemented in the hotel booking sector (Booking.com)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Hotel booking platforms* The Autorité de la concurrence launches, in collaboration with 9 national competition authorities and the European Commission, a survey among hoteliers in order to assess the effects of the remedies implemented in Europe in the hotel booking platforms sector. (...)

The German Competition Authority issues a working paper on "Market Power of Platforms and Networks"
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt publishes working paper on "Market Power of Platforms and Networks"* The Bundeskartellamt has today published a working paper which deals with the "Market Power of Platforms and Networks" in the Internet. The report focuses on the factors relevant for assessing the market (...)

The Hungarian Competition Authority pursues the monitoring of the online booking market after closing its sector inquiry
Hungarian Competition Authority (Budapest)
The GVH continues to monitor the hotel booking market after closing its sectoral inquiry* The Hungarian Competition Authority (Gazdasági Versenyhivatal, GVH) prepared its report on its sectoral inquiry on the online accommodation booking market. Due to the positive changes that took place on (...)

The German Competition Authority informs that, following its investigations, a railway company has decided to make far-reaching changes to the sale of passenger tickets (Deutsche Bahn)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Deutsche Bahn AG to make changes to ticket sales* Following investigations by the Bundeskartellamt, Deutsche Bahn AG has undertaken to make far-reaching changes to the sale of passenger tickets. The measures will improve the ticket sales possibilities of its competitors. In early 2014 the (...)

The German Federal Cartel Office terminates proceedings regarding possible abuse of dominance in the market for the distribution of passenger train tickets and accepts several commitments by the incumbent train company (Deutsche Bahn)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
By a decision of 24 May 2016, the German Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) announced that it had terminated proceedings against Deutsche Bahn AG after having accepted several commitments. In 2014, the FCO initiated an investigation against Deutsche Bahn AG and reached the preliminary conclusion that (...)

The French and German Competition Authority publish a joint study on competition law and data
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The French Autorité de la concurrence and the German Bundeskartellamt publish joint paper on data and its implications for Competition Law* The increasing collection, processing and commercial use of data in digital markets has prompted a broad debate about the role of data in corporate (...)

The EU Commission sends a statement of objections concerning the imposition of restrictions on smartphone manufacturers and mobile network operators (Google)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 20 April 2016, the European Commission confirmed it issued a Statement of Objections (“SO”) to Google concerning the imposition of restrictions on Android device manufacturers and mobile network operators. The investigation was formally opened in April 2015. Google now has until July 2016 to (...)

The Moscow Arbitration Court confirms the Competition Authority’s decision and prescription in relation to operating systems for smartphones (Yandex / Google)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
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FAS Russia
In March 2016, the Moscow Arbitration Court expressed its support of the position of the Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS Russia) on the case of abuse of dominance by the Google group of companies involving its actions on the Android operation system. The decision of FAS Russia was taken as (...)

The German Competition Authority initiates proceedings against a social network company regarding potential abuse of dominance (Facebook)
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
The German Federal Cartel Office (the FCO) has announced that it has initiated proceedings against Facebook for the company’s alleged abuse of its dominant position in a market for social networks. The FCO appears to be taking the position that, as a firm with a possibly dominant position, (...)

The German Competition Authority opens a proceeding against a social network company suspected to have abused of its dominance by infringing data protection rules (Facebook)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt initiates proceeding against Facebook on suspicion of having abused its market power by infringing data protection rules* The Bundeskartellamt has initiated a proceeding against Facebook Inc., USA, the Irish subsidiary of the company and Facebook Germany GmbH, Hamburg. The (...)

The UK High Court throws out private claim for damages based on abuse of dominance in the online mapping sector (Streetmap / Google)
Constantine Cannon (London)
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Constantine Cannon (London)
Google wins court battle against StreetMap in the UK*Google won a big victory Friday in the High Court of England and Wales, which ruled that Google did not abuse its dominant position to the detriment of the now-defunct UK online mapping provider, Streetmap.The Court’s ruling against (...)

The German Competition Authority prohibits the "best price" clauses implemented by a hotel online booking company (Booking.com)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Narrow ’best price’ clauses of Booking also anticompetitive* Today the Bundeskartellamt prohibited Booking (Booking.com Deutschland GmbH, Berlin, and Booking.com B.V., Amsterdam) from continuing to apply its ’best price’ clauses and ordered the hotel booking portal to completely delete the clauses (...)

The Irish Competition Authority publishes the commitments made by an online hotel booking company (Booking.com)
Irish Competition Authority (Dublin)
Commission secures 5-year commitments from Booking.com* Commission secures 5-year commitments from Booking.com Accommodation providers in Ireland will have increased ability to offer lower prices Consumers will have greater access to more competitive rates Tuesday, 6th October 2015: The (...)

The German Federal Cartel Office condemns an athletic equipment company for restricting online sales of its small and medium-sized authorized dealers (Asics)
Ashurst (Milan)
Germany’s Federal Cartel Office finds ASICS’ restrictions of online sales illegal* On 27 August 2015, the Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) concluded its proceedings concerning certain anticompetitive restrictions in the distribution system of ASICS Deutschland (“ASICS“), and found that ASICS breached (...)

The Croatian Competition Authority opens an ex officio investigation regarding an apps sales market (Google)
Croatian Competition Agency (Zagreb)
CCA investigation in Android apps sales market* Following some press articles claiming that the Croatian software companies were forced to open branch offices or find partners abroad because Google did not allow them to register for direct sale of their apps via the Google Play store, the (...)

The Italian Competition Authority renders legally binding the commitments proposed by an online hotel booking company (Booking.com)
Italian Competition Authority
Commitments offered by booking.com: closed the investigation in Italy, France AND Sweden* On 21 April 2015, the Italian Competition Authority has rendered legally binding the commitments offered by Priceline Group’s companies Booking.com BV and Booking.com (Italy) and closed, with respect to (...)

The French Competition Authority obtains extensive commitments from an online hotel booking company (Booking.com)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Online hotel booking sector* The Autorité de la concurrence, in coordination with the European Commission and the Italian and Swedish authorities, has obtained particularly extensive commitments from Booking.com aiming to boost competition between online booking platforms and give hotels more (...)

The Swedish Competition Authority approves voluntary commitments of an online hotel booking companysubject to penalty of a fine (Booking.com)
Vinge (Stockholm)
The Swedish Competition Authority decided, on 15 April 2015, to approve the voluntary commitments presented by Bookingdotcom Sverige AB and Booking.com BV (below, jointly referred to as “Booking.com”). The commitments are associated with a fine of SEK 5 million (approx. EUR 550 000) for (...)

The German Competition Authority sends a statement of objections to an online hotel booking company suspected to abuse of dominance (Booking.com)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt issues statement of objections regarding Booking.com’s ’best price’ clauses* Today the Bundeskartellamt has informed Booking.com Deutschland GmbH, Berlin, of its competition concerns regarding the continued use of ’best price’ clauses in its contracts with hotels in Germany. This (...)

The French Competition Authority and the UK Competition and Markets Authority publish their joint report on digital ecosystems
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The French Autorité de la Concurrence and the UK Competition and Markets Authority have produced a joint report on ecosystems and their effects on competition.* The digital economy gives consumers and firms increased access to products, services, and information. These different products and (...)

The French Competition Authority receives commitments from an online hotel booking company aiming at ending practices likely to constitute an abuse of dominance (Booking.com)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Online hotel booking sector* Booking.com has proposed to the Autorité de la concurrence to remove the so-called “pricing parity clause” obliging hotels to grant it pricing conditions that are at least as favorable as those granted to the other online platforms Hotels can now place booking.com in (...)

The Italian Competition Authority initiates antitrust proceedings concerning use of most favored nation clauses in the online hotel reservations space (Booking.com / Expedia)
Ashurst (Milan)
Italian competition authority investigates online hotel bookings* On 7 May 2014, the Italian Competition Authority (“Agcm”) initiated proceedings (decision only available in Italian) against Booking.com and Expedia in the online hotel reservations space. This is yet another case in the wake of (...)

The French Competition Authority makes legally binding the commitment of the holder of a legal monopoly over horserace bets placed in physical outlets, to separate its online horserace betting activity from its point of sale network (Betclic / PMU)
Ashurst (Milan)
French Competition Authority orders PMU to separate its online horserace betting activity from its physical point of sale network* On 25 February 2014, the French Competition Authority (“AdlC”) issued a decision (available only in French) making legally binding the commitment of Pari Mutuel (...)

The German Competition Authority initiates proceedings on the suspicion of abuse of dominant position in the sale of rail passenger tickets (Deutsche Bahn)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Proceedings initiated against Deutsche Bahn AG Suspicion of restricting competition in ticket sales* The Bundeskartellamt has initiated proceedings against Deutsche Bahn AG on the suspicion that it has abused its dominant position in the sale of rail passenger tickets. Andreas Mundt, (...)

The German and UK competition authorities close investigations against leading online retailer concerning its price parity policy applicable to third party sellers (Amazon)
European Commission (Brussels)
Germany and United Kingdom: Antitrust Cases against Amazon formally closed* On 26 and 29 November 2013, the German Bundeskartellamt (BKartA) and the UK’s Office of Fair Trading (OFT) terminated their respective antitrust investigations into Amazon’s price parity policy applicable to third (...)

The Taiwan Fair Trade Commission fines electronics company for disseminating false online information to disparage competing products (Samsung)
Chung Yuan Christian University
Introduction On October 31, 2013, the Taiwan Fair Trade Commission (TFTC) imposed a fine of NT$10 million (US$340,000) on Samsung for hiring an independent marketing company to disseminate false online information regarding cellphones and other electronic devices produced by its competitors in (...)

The EU Commission expresses concerns that the revised commitments do not address abusive practices in the online search space (Google)
Ashurst (Milan)
European Commission not convinced by improved commitments offered by Google* On 21 October 2013 Google offered improved commitments to the European Commission in order to close the three-year long investigation into four practices that the Commission considered had amounted to a possible abuse (...)

The EU Commission carries out a market test of commitments in its investigation of online search service provider (Google)
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Brussels)
The Google Commitments – Testing Substantive Theories Through Remedy Discussion* Over the last two months, the Commission has been market testing commitments that Google has offered to resolve the Commission’s pending investigation. Many have made thoughtful comments. But there has also been (...)

The EU Commission begins market testing of commitments offered by the leading web search operator to address competition concerns (Google)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 25 April 2013, the Commission issued a press release announcing that it had begun market testing commitments offered by Google in relation to online search and search advertising. In its press release, the Commission stated that it continues to have concerns that Google may be abusing (...)

The EU Commission receives a complaint alleging abuse of dominant position on the market for smartphone operating system (FairSearch / Google)
Garrigues (Brussels)
Some thoughts on the new anti-Google (Android) complaint* Some background to the complaint Back in April the FairSearch coalition in this case only two of its members Microsoft and Nokia lodged a complaint with DG Comp alleging: (a) that by giving Android to device-makers for “free” Google (...)

The Chinese Guangdong High People’s Court renders a judgment on the definition of relevant market in an alleged abuse of dominance case in the IT sector (Qihoo / Tencent)
Renmin University of China
I. Introduction 1. Beijing Qihoo Technology Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to “Qihoo”) is the copyright owner and operator of 360 safe software. Tencent Technology (Shenzhen) Co., Ltd., and Shenzhen Tencent Computer System Co., Ltd. (hereinafter referred to “Tencent”) are respectively the (...)

The Guangdong High Court rules against plaintiff in high-profile on-line abuse of dominance case (Qihoo / Tencent)
First Principles Economics (London)
On the 28th March 2013 the Guangdong High Court published their eagerly awaited decision regarding the abuse of dominance antitrust dispute between Qihoo 360 (Qihoo, the Plaintiff) and Tecent QQ (Tencent, the Defendant). The decision was over fifty thousand Chinese characters in length. This (...)

The French Competition Authority rejects complaint based on allegations of abuse of dominance on the market for online advertising (E-Kanopi)
Ashurst (Milan)
French Competition Authority dismisses E-Kanopi’s complaint against Google* On 4 March 2013 the French competition authority dismissed (only available in French) a complaint by E-Kanopi alleging that Google abused of its dominant position by seeking to force it out of the market in breach of (...)

The US FTC announces proposed settlement concerning practices in online search and advertising (Google search)
Stanford University - Stanford Law School
U.S. Federal Trade Commission announces proposed settlement with Google* On 3 January 2013 the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) announced that Google Inc. has agreed to not seek injunctive relief against rivals using its essential patents. The FTC also announced that Google has altered its (...)

The EU Commission considers that the commitments proposed by the dominant undertaking in the worldwide market for consolidated real-time datafeeds were sufficient to address the abusive restrictions concerning the use of financial instrument codes (Reuters Instrument Codes)
Norton Rose Fulbright (Brussels)
The Thomson Reuters Commitment Decision* On November 12, 2013, the European Commission published a summary of its December 20, 2012 decision (the “Decision”) accepting commitments offered by members of the Thomson Reuters group (“Thomson Reuters”). The Decision ended a three-year-long (...)

The French Competition Authority accepts commitments proposed by editor of printed and online directories and puts an end to its investigations in the market of sale of advertising space in those directories (PagesJaunes)
White & Case (Paris)
In a decision issued on November 22, 2012, the French Competition Authority (hereafter “the FCA”) accepted the commitments proposed by PagesJaunes SA, thereby putting an end to a procedure following complaints for abuse of dominant position, without imposing any fine. PagesJaunes is the leader (...)

The French Competition Authority issues a first commitment decision addressing 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 EU 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 EU Competition Commissioner makes a statement on the progress of the on-going investigation into the alleged abuse of dominance in the search engine market (Google)
Ashurst (Milan)
Almunia offers Google settlement talks* Last 21 may 2012, Competition Commissioner Joaquin Almunia made a statement on the progress of the on-going investigation into Google’s alleged abuse of dominance in the search engine market, which the Commission was investigating since November 2010 (see (...)

A Russian Commercial Appeal Court imposes a significant amend for a breach of competition on the market of domain name registration (Ru-Center)
Deloitte (Moscow)
On March 19, 2012 the 9th Commercial (Arbitrazh) Appeal Court of the Russian Federation issued a landmark antimonopoly case decision concerning distribution of domain names. The dispute concerned significant abuses of the organization entitled to manage Russian domain name system. As it was (...)

The Paris Commercial Court finds that leading internet search company abused its dominant position on the maps market (Bottin Cartographes / Google)
Google (Paris)
Facts Is free an anticompetitive behavior? Bottin Cartographes, a French company which offers solutions to firms which want to integrate maps in their websites, realized that it was losing clients to Google. Its clients, which used to pay for the display on their pages of their location and (...)

The Chinese National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) confirms investigation for abuse of dominance against two giant State-owned telecommunication operators (China Telecom / China Unicom)
King & Wood Mallesons (Beijing)
Earlier Rumor Confirmed: China Telecom and China Unicom under Antitrust Investigation* On November 9, 2011, an earlier rumor indicating that China Telecom is under antitrust investigation for alleged abuse of dominance in the broadband market was confirmed by the National Development and (...)

The US Senate Committee on the Judiciary Subcommittee on Antitrust conducts antitrust hearings on abuse of dominance investigation in the web search industry (Google)
Rimm-Kaufman Group (Charlottesville, VA)
Google Antitrust Hearing: 5 Takeaways* While yesterday’s Senate antitrust hearing on Google practices may have been more about spectacle than action, it was an opportunity to gain insights into the mindset of Google and the government officials that may seek to intervene in their operations. (...)

The US FTC opens in-depth investigation for alleged antitrust violations in the online search market: A point of view (Google)
David A. Balto (Washington, DC)
Internet Search Competition: Where’s the Beef?* On [24] June 2011, Google announced that the FTC had opened an investigation of its search practices. This is an issue I have given considerable thought to. In an article I just released—Internet Search Competition: Where’s the Beef?—I explain (...)

The EU Commission is called on to assess whether a company in the online search market has abused of its dominant position under Art. 102 TFEU (Microsoft, Google)
Liege Competition and Innovation Institute
Microsoft v. Google – Clash of the Titans* On Behalf of the Antitrust Community, A Big Thank You – Antitrust law professors should be grateful to Microsoft (hereafter, “MSFT”). As a repeat offender of the competition laws, MSFT has provided scholars with loads of research and educational material (...)

The US District Court Southern District of New York rejects settlement between online search provider and copyright owners in the digitized books sector (Google Books Settlement)
Garrigues (Brussels)
Google Books Settlement Rejected* Some of you will recall that roughly a year ago I wrote a post on the Google Books settlement (“Google Books Settlement: It’s the search market stupid!”) in which I argued that the only competitive problem, if any, posed by the amended settlement related to the (...)

The US District Court Southern District of New York rejects a proposed settlement in the digitized book search sector (Google Books Settlement)
University of Chicago - Law School
Moving Forward in Google Book Search* On Tuesday, after more than a year of silence, Judge Denny Chin rejected the proposed settlement in the Google book search case. The innovative settlement asked more than Rule 23 could deliver. In his words, the settlement “would simply go too far.” Others (...)

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 (Washington)
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 French Competition Auhtority issues an opinion concerning the dominant position of a search engine company in the market for online advertising (Google)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence considers that Google holds a dominant position on the advertising market linked to search engines. It considers that competition law can apply limits to Google’s actions and provide a response to the competitive stakes brought to light by the actors, without the (...)

The EU Commission investigates in depth competition concerns on the internet market as regards unfavourable treatment of competing services in unpaid and sponsored search results coupled with an alleged preferential placement of own services (Google)
Sheppard Mullin (Del Mar)
EC Investigates Google for Potential Abuse of Dominance in Online Search Market* In July 2010, Vice President of the European Commission (EC) responsible for competition policy, Mr. Joaquin Almunia, referred to the essential role that competition policy has in ensuring “market access and (...)

The EU Commission opens in-depth investigation over alleged antitrust violations in on-line search market (Microsoft / Google)
Wolters Kluwer (Riverwoods)
Microsoft Files Antitrust Complaint with European Commission Against Google* Microsoft Corporation has filed a formal complaint with the European Commission (EC) against Google Inc. as part of the EC’s ongoing antitrust investigation into the search engine company. In a March 30 blog post, Brad (...)

The Chinese State Administration for Industry and Commerce (SAIC) receives requests for review in the internet industry (Baidu / Tencent)
AnJie Law (Beijing)
Market dominance and the Internet: new industry, new rules?* China’s biggest encyclopaedia website, Hudong.com, has requested an anti-monopoly review of Baidu, the leading Chinese internet search engine. Hudong.com is asking the State Administration for Industry and Commerce (SAIC) to fine (...)

The French Competition Authority accepts the commitments undertaken by a search engine company as regards possible exclusionary conduct on the market for online advertising (AdWords)
Ashurst (Milan)
French Competition Authority makes Google’s commitments in Navx case binding* On 28 October 2010, the French Autorité de la Concurrence (“FAC”) formally accepted and thereby made binding on Google a set of improved commitments (available only in French) which the FAC considered to properly address (...)

The French Competition Authority accepts commitments relating to online advertising service (Google AdWords)
Hewlett Packard (Boulogne-Billancourt)
In its decision n° 10-D-30 dated 28 October 2010, relating to practices implemented in the online advertising sector (relative à des pratiques dans le secteur de la publicité en ligne), the French Competition Authority (the «Competition Authority«) accepted the commitments offered by Google to solve (...)

The French Competition Authority launches a market test following a leading internet corporation commitments (Google)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
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Practising Law Institute (New York)
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 EU Commission recognises that due to their dynamics internet markets such as online search engines are characterized by innovative business models that are constantly evolving and therefore market dominance on the internet might be difficult to establish (Google)
Sheppard Mullin (Del Mar)
EC Investigates Google for Potential Abuse of Dominance in Online Search Market* In July 2010, Vice President of the European Commission (EC) responsible for competition policy, Mr. Joaquin Almunia, referred to the essential role that competition policy has in ensuring “market access and (...)

The French Competition Authority grants interim measures regarding online advertising system (Navx - Google)
Simmons & Simmons (Paris)
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Affinion International (London)
In a decision dated 30 June 2010, the French Competition Authority (the "Competition Authority") has considered that Google had implemented the content policy of its AdWords service in a way that lacked objectivity and transparency and resulted in a discriminatory treatment of speed camera (...)

The French Competition Authority imposes interim measures in order to ensure that a company providing advertising services, implements its content policy in an objective, transparent and non discriminatory manner (Navx / Google - AdWords)
White & Case (Paris)
Background On June, 30, 2010, following a complaint coupled with a request for interim measures lodged by Navx, the French National Competition Authority (thereafter “NCA”), by way of interim decision, ordered Google Ireland and Google Inc. (hereafter “Google”) to implement in an objective, (...)

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 French Competition Authority issues an interim decision opening an investigation to ascertain abuse of dominance by refusing to display advertising (Navx)
Ashurst (Milan)
Google under investigation in France for alleged abuse in the online advertising market* On 30 June 2010, the French Competition Authority (“FCA”) issued an interim decision opening an investigation to ascertain whether Google abused its dominant position, as well as Navx’s state of economic (...)

The Italian Competition Authority publishes commitments offered to put an end to an antitrust investigation under article 102 TFEU concerning use of newspaper content (Google)
Ashurst (Milan)
Google offers commitments to close investigation in Italy* On 14 May 2010, the Italian Competition Authority (“AGCM”) published the commitments (available on the AGCM website) offered by Google to put an end to an antitrust investigation of its Google News service under Article 102 TFEU (see (...)

The Italian Competition Authority closes investigation into an online news aggregator service following commitments (Google)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
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Practising Law Institute (New York)
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 EU Commission market tests commitments proposed by a leading software company to address allegations of tying an internet browser (Microsoft)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
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Practising Law Institute (New York)
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 (...)

The EU Commission holds a public hearing on the US settlement with class of authors and publishers (Google Books Settlement)
Ashurst (Milan)
European Commission holds public hearing on the “Google Books” US settlement* On 7 September 2009, the European Commission held an “information hearing” to establish the effect on the EU market of Google’s settlement with a US class of authors and publishers, which disputed steps taken by the (...)

The Portuguese Competition Authority adopts landmark decision concerning an abuse of dominant position case in the Internet broadband access markets (PT / ZON)
Luís Silva Morais & Associados (Lisbon)
In the beginning of September, 2009, the Portuguese Competition Authority (hereinafter, ’ADC’) has adopted a decision concerning an important case of abuse of dominant position in the wholesale and retail markets for internet broadband access. This decision confirms the special attention that the (...)

The Italian Competition Authority starts a proceedings against Google Italy for an alleged abuse of dominant position against Italian newspaper and magazines editors (Federazione Italiana Editori Giornali/Google Italy)
LUISS Guido Carli University (Rome)
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LUISS Guido Carli University (Rome)
On the 26th August 2009 the Italian Competition Authority (the ICA) decided to start a proceedings against GOOGLE Italy (the Italian branch of the GOOGLE Group) for alleged infringement of article 82 of the EU Treaty (abuse of dominant position). The proceedings follows a complaint by the (...)

The Italian Competition Authority starts investigation against the main IT operator for abuse of dominance on the online collecting advertisement market (Google Italy)
Codacons (Rome)
Google Italy is an Italian company belonging to the US Google Group INC. It is active world-wide and it is the most popular engine search. Among others, Google provides also "Google News" and it gains the majority of its turnover from the collection and intermediation of advertisement on line . (...)

The Italian Competition Authority investigates alleged abuse of dominance in the market for online advertising (FIEG / Google)
Ashurst (Milan)
Italian Competition Authority investigates Google’s alleged abuse in the market for online advertising* On 26 August 2009, the Italian Competition Authority opened an investigation (see also press release of 27 August 2009) to determine whether Google is abusing its dominant position in online (...)

The French Competition Authority accepts the commitments made by the telecommunications incumbent to address competitions concerns about the marketing of its wholesale broadband offers (Mediaserv / France Télécom)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Marketing of wholesale broadband offers: France Télécom makes commitments before the Autorité de la concurrence, designed to improve the quality of services provided to third-party operators in France’s overseas départements.* Following a complaint by the company Mediaserv, the Autorité de la (...)

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 (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 (...)

EU Court of Justice Advocate General Mazák proposes the setting aside of the CFI’s judgment in an abuse of dominant position case in the telecommunication sector (France Télécom)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
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Practising Law Institute (New York)
On 25 September 2008, Advocate General Mazák issued his opinion in France Télécom‘s appeal of the judgment of the Court of First Instance (CFI). This judgment upheld a Commission decision which concluded that France Télécom had abused its dominant position on the French market for high-speed Internet (...)

The Macedonian Administrative Court confirms the Competition Authority’s decision prosecuting the incumbent telecom operator for refusing access to its network by independent Internet providers (Macedonian Telecom)
Faculty of Law - University of Macau
Summary The Macedonian Administrative Court affirmed the decision of the Macedonian Competition Authority prosecuting the incumbent telecom operator for abuse of dominant position manifested in denial of access to its own ADSL network by independent internet providers, while the same (...)

The Warsaw Court of Appeal quashes the first instance ruling reversing the NRA’s decision having imposed a € 21.5 million fine on the telecommunications incumbent for tying of Internet services contrary to cost-oriented prices principle (Telekomunikacja Polska)
European University Institute (Florence)
On 10 April 2008 the Court of Appeal quashed the verdict of the lower court, the SOKiK (the Polish Court for Competition and Consumer Protection), which in 2007 reversed the decision of the President of the UKE (the Office for Electronic Communications), imposing a 100 million PLN fine (...)

The Polish Competition Authority fines the largest telecom operator a record fine of € 20 M for abusing its dominant position on the Internet access market (Telekomunikacja Polska)
Allen & Overy (Warsaw)
On 20 December 2007 the President of the Polish Office for Competition and Consumer Protection (OCCP) issued a decision imposing a fine of PLN 75 million (approximately EUR 20 million) on Telekomunikacja Polska S.A. (TPSA), the incumbent telecom operator in Poland, for abusing its dominant (...)

The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York finds that an association demanding its members to combine their websites into one unified website does not constitute an unreasonable restraint of trade in the hockey industry (Madison Square Garden / NHL)
Entwistle & Cappucci
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Epstein Baker Green (Newark)
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Ferro Labella & Zucker (New Jersey)
The Southern District of New York recently denied Madison Square Garden L.P.’s ("MSG") attempt to enjoin the National Hockey League (the "NHL") from transferring MSG’s Rangers team website to a server primarily run by the NHL. The Court found that seizing MSG’s website was not a naked restraint on (...)

The French Competition Council inflicts a 45 Million € 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)
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 European (...)

The French Competition Authority fines an Internet operator for implementing discriminatory practices on the high-speed internet access market (France Télécom / Wanadoo)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
After a negotiated settlement with the company, the Conseil de la concurrence imposes €45m fine on France Telecom for having hindered the development of internet access providers competing with its Wanadoo subsidiary* Following the referrals by T-Online and Liberty Surf companies, respectively (...)

The Polish Competition Authority reverses on procedural grounds the Telecom Regulator’s decision having fined the former incumbent for tying Internet and telecommunications offers (Telekomunikacja Polska)
DeBenedetti Majewski Szczesniak (Warsaw)
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Bartkowiak Wojciechowski Halupczak Springer
In May, the Polish Court for Competition and Consumer Protection reversed the decision of the President of the Office for Electronic Communications (OEC) imposing a fine of 100,000,000 PLN on Telekomunikacja Polska S.A. (“TP S.A.”) for the unauthorized binding of offers of Neostrada tp (an (...)

The Cyprus Competition Authority dismisses a complaint filed by a consumer against the Cyprus Telecommunications Authority for abuse of dominance on the Internet services market (Philippides/CYTA)
University of Tilburg - Center for Law and Economics (TILEC)
On 26 June 2006 the Cyprus Commission for the Protection of Competition (C.P.C.) dismissed a complaint filed by Mr. Alexis Philippides, a consumer and client of the Cyprus Telecommunications Authority (CYTA), against the latter for abuse of dominance in the market of Internet connection (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Authority fines the former telecom incumbent for margin squeeze limiting access to ADSL broadband internet access service (Teo)
Lithuanian Competition Council (Vilnius)
On 5 October 2006 the Lithuanian Competition Council (CC) issued a decision establishing a fine of LTL 3,011,000 (approx. EUR 872,046) on TEO LT, AB (TEO) for the abuse of a dominant position prohibited by Article 9 of the Law on Competition. This was the third time that TEO, a former telecom (...)

The Hungarian Competition Office establishes that the telecom incumbent abusively used of its dominant position on the ADSL Internet market (Magyar Telekom)
Hogan Lovells (Budapest)
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Hogan Lovells (Budapest)
In its decision of 5 September 2006 the Hungarian Competition Office established that the practice adopted by Hungarian Telekom for ADSL-modem removal infringed Article 21 (a) of the Hungarian Competition Act - the equivalent provision to Article 82 of the EC Treaty. Hungarian Telekom, which (...)

The Court of First Instance of The Hague dismisses a complaint for abusive access tariff on the broadband Internet access (Educatief Net - Easynet / KPN Telecom)
European Commission - DG HR (Brussels)
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Dutch Ministry of Security and Justice (The Hague)
Nl.tree was established by nine cable operators, in order to supply, following an agreement concluded with the Dutch Ministry of Education, internet access and related services, known as “Kennisnet”, to primary schools, secondary schools and vocational and adult learning institutions. Broadband (...)

The French Competition Authority imposes an unprecedented € 80 M fine to the telecommunications incumbent for abuse of a dominant position on the broadband internet market (France Télécom)
Sheppard Mullin (Brussels)
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Lni avocats (Paris)
In November 1999, Neuf Télécom, a telecommunications operator, filed a complaint with the French Competition Council (hereinafter “the Council”) against France Télécom, the French historic telephone and Internet provider, on the grounds that the latter was conducting anti-competitive practices on the (...)

The Swedish Market Court rejects a complaint against the incumbent for abusive mixed bundling and predatory pricing in the broadband internet access sector (B2 Bredband / TeliaSonera)
Cederquist
Background Bredbandsbolaget sues Teliasonera for abuse of a dominant position on the market for fixed telephony through illegal mixed bundling, customer discrimination and predatory pricing but fails to prove dominance. Decision On 1 November 2005 the Swedish Market Court rendered its (...)

The Cypriot Competition Authority imposes a fine for price squeezing and excessive pricing on the Internet services market (CYTA)
University of Tilburg - Center for Law and Economics (TILEC)
On 30 May 2005 the Cypriot Commission for the Protection of Competition (hereinafter C.P.C.) ended its own initiative investigation of the Cyprus Telecommunications Authority (hereinafter CYTA) by unanimously finding CYTA liable for abuse of its dominant position in the market for the provision (...)

The French Competition Authority dismisses a complaint regarding alleged anticompetitive practices in the sectors for Internet music downloads and digital walkmans (Apple Computer France)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Internet music downloads - The Conseil dismisses VirginMega’s complaint against Apple, due to insufficient evidence in view of the case elements available.* On 28th June 2004, the Conseil de la concurrence received a complaint from the company VirginMega regarding practices by the company Apple (...)

The EU Commission adopts a decision under Article 82 against French internet provider’s pricing policy for ADSL services (Wanadoo)
Sheppard Mullin (Brussels)
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KPMG (Paris)
"Two Commission decisions on price abuse in the telecommunications sector"* During the first half of the year 2003, the Commission adopted two formal prohibition decisions pursuant to Article 82 EC-Treaty regarding abusive pricing for the provision of telecommunications services. Those are the (...)

The French Competition Authority ends ban on ADSL packs provided by telecom incumbent (Wanadoo eXtense)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
High-speed ADSL Internet access : the Conseil de la concurrence lifts the suspension on sales of Wanadoo "eXtense" packs in France Télécom outlets* In a decision dated 19th July 2002, the Conseil lifted the suspension of sales of Wanadoo "eXtense" packs in France Télécom outlets. This decision (...)

The French Competition Authority grants interim measures in the ADSL line sector (France Télécom)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
High-speed Internet access via ADSL : the Conseil de la concurrence orders France Télécom to suspend sales of eXtense packs in its outlets* Following a referral by the company T-Online, an Internet service provider operating under the brand name Club Internet, the Conseil de la concurrence (...)

The French Competition Authority opens an inquiry in the WAP technology sector (France Télécom Mobiles / SFR)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
the Conseil de la concurrence opens an inquiry into practices by France Télécom Mobiles and SFR in the WAP technology sector* In a decision dated 7th November 2000, following a referral by the company Wappup.com, the Conseil de la concurrence decided to open an inquiry into practices by France (...)

Mergers

The French Competition Authority clears a merger on the online advertising market (Aufeminin / TF1)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Online advertising* The Autorité de la concurrence clears the acquisition of Aufeminin by TF1 On 16 March 2018, TF1 notified the Autorité de la concurrence of its acquisition of sole control of Aufeminin. Following the consultation of competitors and TF1’s clients along with an analysis of the (...)

The EU Commission decides to review a merger in the market of music recognition applications for smartphones (Apple / Shazam)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission to assess the acquisition of Shazam by Apple* The European Commission has accepted a request from Austria, France, Iceland, Italy, Norway, Spain and Sweden to assess under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of Shazam by Apple. The Commission considers the (...)

The French Competition Authority unconditionally clears a merger between two real estate online platforms in Phase II (Logic-Immo.com / SeLoger.com)
DLA Piper (Paris)
On 1st February 2018, the French Competition Authority (“FCA”) unconditionally cleared in Phase II proceedings the planned acquisition of sole control of French company Concept Multimédia - which owns the real estate online platform Logic-Immo.com - by German group Axel Springer - which owns the (...)

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

The US FTC files a complaint challenging a proposed acquisition (Red Venture / Bankrate)
Shearman & Sterling (Washington)
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Shearman & Sterling (Washington)
,
Shearman & Sterling (Washington)
On November 3, 2017, the Federal Trade Commission filed a complaint challenging Red Ventures’ proposed acquisition of Bankrate. The FTC alleged that the deal likely would have lessened competition in the market for thirdparty paid referral services for senior living facilities—even though Red (...)

The EU Commission fines a social network company for providing misleading information during the merger investigation (Facebook / WhatsApp)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission fines Facebook €110 million for providing misleading information about WhatsApp takeover* The European Commission has fined Facebook €110 million for providing incorrect or misleading information during the Commission’s 2014 investigation under the EU Merger Regulation of (...)

The EU Commission fines a company for providing incorrect or misleading information during its investigation on a merger (Facebook / WhatsApp)
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (London)
,
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (London)
,
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Brussels)
On May 18, 2017, the European Commission (the “Commission”) fined Facebook €110 million for providing incorrect or misleading information during its 2014 investigation of its acquisition of WhatsApp The magnitude of the fine dwarfs the few penalties the Commission has imposed in the past for (...)

The German Competition Authority clears a merger on the e-book online platform market (Rakuten / Tolino)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt clears acquisition of "tolino" e-book platform by Rakuten* The Bundeskartellamt has cleared the acquisition by the Japanese online retailer Rakuten Inc. of the assets for the technical operation of the "tolino" e-book platform. The seller of the assets is Deutsche Telekom AG, (...)

The EU Commission sends a statement of objections to a social network suspected of having transmitted misleading informations concerning a merger (Facebook / WhatsApp)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission alleges Facebook provided misleading information about WhatsApp takeover* The European Commission has sent a Statement of Objections to Facebook alleging the company provided incorrect or misleading information during the Commission’s 2014 investigation under the EU Merger (...)

The EU Commission clears a merger, subject to remedies, on the professional social networks market (LinkedIn / Microsoft)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission approves acquisition of LinkedIn by Microsoft, subject to conditions* The European Commission has approved under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of LinkedIn by Microsoft. The decision is conditional on compliance with a series of commitments aimed at (...)

The French Competition Authority holds that the relevant market for retail distribution of electronic products comprises both physical and online stores (Fnac / Darty)
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Rome)
The French Competition Authority holds that the relevant market for retail distribution of electric product comprises both physical and online stores* On 18 July 2016, the French Competition Authority (FCA or the Authority) cleared the acquisition of Darty by the Fnac group, a move which will (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Council prohibits a merger between two managers of classified ads websites for real estate and vehicles (AS Eesti Meedia / AllePAL OÜ)
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
Competition Council: Merger between classified ads websites restricted competition* On 6 May 2016, the Competition Council (hereinafter – KT) prohibited a merger whereby in 2014 AS Eesti Meedia acquired 100 per cent of AllePAL OÜ shares. KT found that the merger restricted competition in the (...)

The German Competition Authority clears a merger in the online advertising sector (Ströer / OMS)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Clearance of takeover by Ströer of online marketing company OMS* In first phase proceedings the Bundeskartellamt has cleared plans by Ströer SE, Cologne, to acquire all the shares in OMS-Vermarktungs GmbH & Co. KG, Düsseldorf. The merger project affects the online advertising sector. Andreas (...)

The EU Commission approves the acquisition of a data centre operator by rival subject to the divestment of a number of data centres in Amsterdam, London and Frankfurt (Telecity / Equinix)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission clears acquisition of Telecity by Equinix, subject to conditions* The European Commission has approved the proposed acquisition of data centre operator Telecity by rival Equinix subject to the divestment of a number of data centres in Amsterdam, London and Frankfurt. The (...)

The German Competition Authority clears a merger between major online dating platforms in phase II (EliteMedianet / Parship)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Major online dating platforms can merge* The Bundeskartellamt has cleared in second phase proceedings the planned acquisition of all the shares in EliteMedianet GmbH, Hamburg, by an investment fund of Oakley Capital Limited, London. The merger affects the market for online dating platforms, on (...)

The German Competition Authority publishes a discussion paper on internet platforms in merger control, contractual restrictions of competition and abuse of dominance scenarios
Heinz & Zagrosek (Köln)
The FCO publishes discussion paper on internet platform markets* On October 1, 2015, the FCO published a paper entitled “Digital economy – internet platforms between competition law, privacy and consumer protection” on the occasion of a conference of the working group competition law (consisting (...)

The EU Commission approves without commitments an acquisition in the recent information technology sector (Facebook / WhatsApp)
Squire Patton Boggs (Brussels)
EU Commission approves Facebook’s acquisition of WhatsApp* On 3 October 2014, the European Commission of the European Union (the “Commission”) approved the acquisition without any commitments. After the approval of the acquisition of Skype by Microsoft in 2011 and of the acquisition of Nokia by (...)

The EU Commission unconditionally clears an acquisition in the social media sector (Facebook / WhatsApp)
Clifford Chance (Madrid)
Background information On 3 October 2014 the European Commission ("Commission") unconditionally clears in first phase the €14 billion acquisition of WhatsApp by Facebook (the “Transaction”). The Transaction was already conditionally authorized in April 2014 by the US Federal Trade Commission (...)

The EU Commission unconditionally approves in first phase an acquisition in the digital sector (Facebook / WhatsApp)
European Commission (Brussels)
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DG COMP (Brussels)
,
DG COMP (Brussels)
"What’s Up with Merger Control in the Digital Sector? Lessons from the Facebook/WhatsApp EU merger case"* The Facebook/WhatsApp decision provides an insight into how the Commission tackles novel issues in the application of merger control rules to the digital sector, in particular to free (...)

The Cypriot Commission for the Protection of Competition receives notification of a merger in the telecommunication sector (Rocket Internet Germany / MTN Dubai)
Commission for the Protection of Competition of the Republic of Cyprus (Nycosia)
Notification of concentration regarding the acquisition of share capital of Middle East Internet Holding S.a.r.l. by MTN (Dubai) Ltd* The Service of the Commission for the Protection of Competition received on behalf of Rocket Internet GmbH and MTN (Dubai) Ltd notification of a proposed (...)

The Cypriot Commission for the Protection of Competition receives notification of an international acquisition in the telecom sector (Africa Internet / Millicom)
Commission for the Protection of Competition of the Republic of Cyprus (Nycosia)
Notification of a concentration concerning the joint acquisition of the share capital of Africa Internet Holding GmbH by Mobile Telephone Networks Holdings (Pty) Ltd, Millicom International Cellular S.A. and Rocket Internet Holding GmbH* The Commission for the Protection of Competition (...)

The French Competition Authority conditionally clears an acquisition of sole control on the pay-TV market (Mediaserv / Canal Plus Overseas)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Subject to a number of commitments, the Autorité de la concurrence has cleared the acquisition of Mediaserv by Canal Plus Overseas, a subsidiary of the Canal Plus Group* The Autorité de la concurrence has cleared, subject to a number of commitments, the exclusive takeover by the Canal Plus (...)

A US District Court finds evidence that the merging parties expected the transaction to have anticompetitive effects (Bazaarvoice / PowerReviews)
Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe (San Francisco)
Another Example of Why You Should Follow the “New York Times” Rule — the Bazaarvoice Decision* Have you heard of the New York Times rule? The rule is: don’t write something down in a business communication unless you’re comfortable with its text appearing in the New York Times. If everyone followed (...)

The US District Court Northern District of California rules against non-reported acquisition in the market for product ratings and reviews platforms (Bazaarvoice / PowerReviews)
Wolters Kluwer (Riverwoods)
Combination of online consumer review platforms Bazaarvoice and PowerReviews found to violate Clayton Act* Last week, the federal district court in San Francisco ruled that Bazaarvoice Inc.’s June 2012 acquisition of PowerReviews Inc. violated Sec. 7 of the Clayton Act. In a “necessarily lengthy (...)

The EU General Court rejects rival’s claim and gives the green signal for an acquisition in the communications services market (Microsoft / Skype)
Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co (New Delhi)
By its decision dated 11 December 2013, Luxembourg based European General Court approves the acquisition of Skype by Microsoft. Background On 02.09.2011 the EU Commission was notified of a proposed concentration by which, Microsoft Corporation, USA acquired 100% of the outstanding shares and (...)

The New York Attorney General settles remedies regarding the merger between two leading online food ordering services in Manhattan (Seamless / GrubHub)
Ashurst (Milan)
NY Attorney General reaches settlement with two leading online food ordering services in Manhattan* On 5 August 2013 NY Attorney General stated that he reached a settlement with Seamless North America, LLC and GrubHub, two leading online food ordering services in Manhattan, in order to address (...)

The US FTC imposes divestiture and "unusual" conduct remedies to protect the competitor after an acquisition in commercial real estate databases and information services (CoStar / Loopnet)
Weil, Gotshal & Manges (Washington)
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Weil, Gotshal & Manges (Washington)
On April 26, 2012, the FTC challenged CoStar Group’s proposed $860 million acquisition of LoopNet and accepted a settlement that required not only divestitures, but also “unusual” additional conduct remedies. CoStar is the largest provider of commercial real estate (CRE) information services in (...)

The US FTC seeks divestiture and conduct remedies before approving an acquisition in the highly concentrated market for commercial real estate information (CoStar / Loopnet)
Venable (New York)
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Venable (Washington)
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Venable (Washington)
After a year of scrutiny, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) resolved its competitive concerns over the merger of two firms that provide commercial real estate (CRE) listings and other data. In April 2011, CoStar Group, Inc. announced plans to acquire LoopNet, Inc. for approximately $860 (...)

The UK OFT decides not to refer an anticipated acquisition in the social networking industry to the Competition Commission (Facebook / Instagram)
Herbert Smith Freehills (Brussels)
In May 2012 the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) opened a merger investigation into the acquisition by Facebook Inc (Facebook) of Instagram Inc (Instagram). This was the first time a merger involving Facebook, the global colossus in the social networking industry, publicly came under the scrutiny (...)

The US DoJ takes action against CEO of cable television services company for failure to comply with HSR Act in connection with acquisition of vested shares (Roberts / Comcast)
Linklaters (New York)
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Linklaters (Washington)
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Linklaters (New York)
The US antitrust authorities recently took action against an executive for violation of the Hart-Scott-Rodino Act (the “HSR Act”) in connection with the acquisition of stock as part of his compensation, resulting in a $500,000 fine. The HSR Act requires acquirers of certain voting securities (...)

The US DoJ closes its investigation and gives green light to $400 M acquisition in the advertising display industry (Google / Admeld)
Sidley Austin (Brussels)
DOJ closes investigation into Google’s acquisition of Admeld Inc.* On December 2, 2011 the DOJ announced its decision to close the investigation into Google’s acquisition of Admeld Inc. allowing Google to complete its $ 400 million merger. The DOJ’s investigation focused on the potential (...)

The French Competition Authority clears a merger in the e-commerce sector (Altarea / Rue du commerce)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence clears the acquisition of Rue du Commerce’s sole control by Altarea*. The Autorité de la concurrence examined the acquisition of Rue du Commerce by Altarea, by means of the acquisition of a bloc of shares and a public takeover bid on Rue du Commerce’s securities. (...)

The US DOJ clears an acquisition subject to conditions in the IT industry (Google / ITA)
Jones Day (Houston)
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Jones Day (Sillicon Valley)
The U.S. Department of Justice has announced that, to allow Google’s proposed acquisition of ITA Software, DOJ and the parties have agreed to a set of requirements that will govern Google’s future operation of the ITA business. This action is notable as another challenge to a vertical merger and (...)

The German Competition Authority prohibits online video platform joint venture (RTL / Pro7sat1)
Jones Day (Frankfurt)
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Jones Day (Dusseldorf)
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Jones Day (Frankfurt)
On March 17, 2011, the German Federal Cartel Office (Bundeskartellamt) rejected plans by German broadcasting groups RTL and Pro7Sat1 to launch a joint venture for the creation and operation of an online video platform. This decision illustrates how in Europe, particularly in Germany, antitrust (...)

The US FTC announces the closure of its investigation of the acquisition of the mobile advertising network company (AdMob)
Stanford University - Stanford Law School
U.S. Federal Trade Commission closes its investigation of Google’s acquisition of AdMob* On 21 May 2010 the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) announced the closure of its investigation of Google’s acquisition of the mobile advertising network company AdMob. According to the FTC, though the (...)

The European Commission clears, subject to divestment, the acquisition of a vendor of videoconferencing products with dual headquarters in Norway and in the US (Cisco / Tandberg)
J G Associates (Brussels)
"Merger: main developments between 1 January and 30 April 2010" On 29 March the Commission approved under the EU Merger Regulation the proposed acquisition of Tandberg, a vendor of videoconferencing products with dual headquarters in Norway and in the US, by Cisco of the US. The approval is (...)

The EU Commission clears, subject to remedies, a merger between French and German telecommunications companies in the UK (Orange / T-Mobile)
J G Associates (Brussels)
"Merger: main developments between 1 January and 30 April 2010" The Commission cleared, 1 March, the proposed merger of Orange UK and T-Mobile UK, respectively France Télécom’s (FT) and Deutsche Telekom’s (DT) UK subsidiaries. The decision is conditional, firstly upon the amendment of an existing (...)

The EU Commission clears merger in the internet search and search advertising services markets (Microsoft / Yahoo)
DG COMP (Brussels)
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European Commission (Brussels)
"Economic background of the Microsoft/Yahoo! Case"* I. Introduction This paper offers an economic background for the analysis conducted by the Commission during the recent M.5727 Microsoft/Yahoo! transaction and complements the article ‘The Microsoft/Yahoo! Search business case’ published in (...)

The European Commission clears in phase I a merger in the internet search market addressing the concept of concentration and conducting a detailed two-sided market analysis (Microsoft / Yahoo!)
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
Microsoft/Yahoo! – the concept of a concentration* The Commission’s recent decision approving Microsoft’s acquisition of Yahoo!’s Search Business (including internet search and search advertising) contains an interesting application of the definition of a concentration under the Merger Regulation. (...)

The Competition Authority of Bosnia & Herzegovina clears a merger of two Internet providers and imposes a fine for submission of incorrect information (Aneks / Ki system)
Faculty of Law - University of Macau
Summary The Competition Authority of Bosnia & Herzegovina (Konkurencijsko vijeće) (KV) cleared a merger between two dial-up and broadband internet providers in the cities of Banja Luka and Prijedor imposing a fine for the submission of incorrect information by the merging parties. Facts (...)

The French Minister of Economy requires commitments to address possible horizontal and conglomerate effects in a merger of a mobile network and pay-TV operator and an Internet service provider (SFR / Neuf Cegetel)
RBB Economics (Brussels)
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RBB Economics
Introduction On 15 April 2008, the French Minister of Economy (hereafter, the Minister) cleared the proposed acquisition by Société Française du Radiotéléphone (SFR) of a majority share of Neuf Cegetel, subject to remedies. The transaction raised conglomerate issues in the markets for broadband (...)

The EU Commission clears merger in the online advertising market applying for the first time the non horizontal merger guidelines (Google / DoubleClick)
DG COMP (Brussels)
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DG COMP (Brussels)
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European Commission - DG CNECT (Brussels)
"Google/DoubleClick: The first test for the Commission’s nonhorizontal merger guidelines"* I. Introduction The Google/DoubleClickmerger generated considerable interest as it concerned the ubiquitous search engine that most Europeans use in their daily lives. From a competition policy (...)

The EU Commission clears an acquisition in the online advertising market (Google / DoubleClick)
J G Associates (Brussels)
,
DG COMP (Brussels)
"Mergers: main developments between 1 January and 30 April 2008"* On 11 March the Commission decided to clear the proposed acquisition of the online advertising technology company DoubleClick by Google, both based in the US. Google operates an internet search engine that offers search (...)

The French Minister of Economy clears in Phase I with behavioural commitments a merger in the Internet classified advertisements market (Spir Communication / Schibsted)
University Paris II Panthéon‑Assas
The operation By a letter of 10 09 2007, the Minister cleared in phase I a merger between Spir and Schibsted compagnies. It created a jointly owned compagny between the notifying parties. The new company controls both parties’ activities in the sector of classified advertisements for the sale of (...)

The French Minister of Economy sets out principles for the assessment of competition in markets that use Internet as media and conditionally clears in phase I a merger in the market for online classified advertisement (Spir / Schibsted)
RBB Economics (Brussels)
Introduction On 10 September 2007 the French Minister of Economy, Finances and Employment (hereafter the “Minister”) cleared the creation by Spir Communication and Schibsted ASA of a jointly owned company, subject to behavioural commitments (Decision C2007/19, hereafter “the Decision”). The new (...)

The Hungarian Competition Authority clears a merger in the co-location services sector subject to remedies including separate operation, non-discrimination provisions and access obligations (Dataplex)
Lakatos, Köves & Partners (Budapest)
The operation Dataplex is the most significant provider (with possessing approximately 50 per cent of the shares of the free area capacity) of the infocommunication outsourcing services (such as setting up the infrastructure, data storage services, ensuring the continuous course of business (...)

The Latvian Competition Council clears a merger in the markets for data transmission services and Internet access services subject to divestiture remedies (Lattelecom / Microlink Latvia)
Cobalt Legal (Riga)
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Cobalt Legal (Riga)
The operation On 30 May 2005 the Latvian Competition Council received from Lattelecom SIA a merger notification. In the merger notification Lattelecom SIA informed the Competition Council that on 16 May 2005 a Future Purchase Agreement was signed between Estonian company Elion Ettevotted AS, (...)

The Norwegian Competition Authority accepts a merger in the broadband telecommunications sector, subject to the divestment of a business unit (Telenor / Tiscali)
Ernst & Young
The operation Telenor Telecom Solutions AS (Telenor) acquired the entire share capital of in Tiscali AS on 23 August 2004. Telenor Telecom Solutions AS and Tiscali AS provide broadband services in Norway. The market(s) concerned by remedy(ies) The relevant markets defined by the Norwegian (...)

The German Bundeskartellamt clears a merger in the online travel agency industry (Bild.de / T-Online)
European Court of Justice (Luxembourg)
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DG Economic and Financial Affairs (ECFIN) (Brussels)
"Internet Joint Ventures and the Quest for Exclusive Content: The T-Online Cases"* Introduction EC and national competition law issues arising from the marketing of ‘premium’ content, such as travel services and sports news, via the Internet were at the centre of several recent competition (...)

The US FTC prevents the closing of a merger between two major online job boards and suggests that relevant market is limited to online job services (Monster / Hotjobs)
WilmerHale (Washington)
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Williams & Connolly
In June 2001, TMP Worldwide, owner of the dominant online job board “Monster.com,” agreed to purchase the second largest online job board, “HotJobs.” Rather than permitting the merger to go forward as scheduled, the Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) prevented the closing indefinitely until the parties (...)

The EU Commission starts an in-depth investigation into a planned online travel agency leading the parties to change the structure of their venture and to withdraw the merger (T-Online, TUI and C&N)
European Court of Justice (Luxembourg)
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DG Economic and Financial Affairs (ECFIN) (Brussels)
"Internet Joint Ventures and the Quest for Exclusive Content: The T-Online Cases"* Introduction EC and national competition law issues arising from the marketing of ‘premium’ content, such as travel services and sports news, via the Internet were at the centre of several recent competition (...)

The US FTC imposes a host of conduct remedies, regulating business operations and reporting obligations, to prevent the exclusion of other competitors resulting from a vertical merger in the internet and cable industries (AOL / Time Warner)
Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz (New York)
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Hogan Lovells (Washington)
AFTER THE PUBLICATION OF OUR article, Antitrust Review of New Economy Acquisitions, in the Fall 2000 issue of this magazine, the federal antitrust authorities continued to leave their mark on the developing new economy. Two subsequent consent decrees—AOL-Time Warner and WorldCom-Intermedia— (...)

The EU Commission approves a merger between French and Canadian companies in the broadcasting industry (Vivendi / Canal Plus / Seagram)
European External Action Service (Brussels)
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Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) (London)
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DG COMP (Brussels)
"Merger Control: main developments between 1st September 2000 and 31st December 2000"* In October, the Commission approved the acquisition by French telecommunications and media company Vivendi and its subsidiary Canal+ of Canada’s Seagram. The transaction significantly affected three markets, (...)

The EU Commission clears a merger in the entertainment industry creating the first vertically-integrated Internet content provider (AOL / Time Warner)
Conseil régional de Midi-Pyrénées
"The Commission’s review of the media merger wave"* The media industry involves a wide and diversified set of activities vertically related. Indeed, different players such as content providers, rights holders and content distributors all operate in the value chain from the production of content (...)

The EU Commission conditionally approves the creation of an Internet portal joint-venture (Vizzavi / Vodafone / Vivendi / Canal Plus)
European External Action Service (Brussels)
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Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) (London)
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DG COMP (Brussels)
"Merger Control: main developments between 1st May 2000 and 31st August 2000"* Regulatory clearance for the creation of the Vizzavi Internet portal joint venture between Vodafone, Vivendi and Canal+ was made possible after the companies submitted commitments to ensure rival Internet portals (...)

The EU Commission prohibits a merger between two US telecommunications companies (MCI WorldCom / Sprint)
European External Action Service (Brussels)
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Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) (London)
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DG COMP (Brussels)
"Merger Control: main developments between 1st May 2000 and 31st August 2000"* The Commission decided to prohibit the merger between US telecommunications firms MCI WorldCom Inc and Sprint Corp as it would have resulted in the creation of a dominant position in the market for top-level (...)

The Greek Competition Commission clears a merger in the telecommunications sector subject to non-exclusive appearance of an undertaking name on the internet site (EFG Eurobank / Infoquest / Unifon / Com Quest)
Zepos & Yannopoulos
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Zepos & Yannopoulos
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Zepos & Yannopoulos
The operation The Hellenic Competition Commission approved, by virtue of its decision 129/II/2000 dated 25 April, 2000, the acquisition of joint control of the company “COM QUEST S.A.” by the companies “EFG EUROBANK S.A.”, “INFOQUEST AEVE” and “UNIFON S.A.”. The shareholding structure of the company (...)

The EU Commission authorizes the creation of joint venture in the publishing industry (BOL Spain/Bertelsmann/Planeta Corporación)
European Commission (DG NEAR)
"Commission authorises creation of joint venture BOL Spain by Bertelsmann AG and Planeta Corporación S.R.L."* The European Commission has cleared the concentration between Bertelsmann AG and Planeta Corporación S.R.L. Through this operation the parties will obtain joint control over Books (...)

State Aids

The EU Commission opens an in-depth investigation into statutory rules that exempt certain financing income earned by foreign subsidiaries (United Kingdom)
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (London)
,
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
On 26 October 2017, the European Commission (the Commission) opened an in-depth investigation into UK statutory rules that exempt certain financing income earned by foreign subsidiaries of UK corporate taxpayers from UK tax. The Commission’s investigation will focus on whether the UK Controlled (...)

The EU General Court confirms that public funding of an e-platform for procurement purposes does not constitute a State aid (Aanbestedingskalender)
College of Europe (Bruges)
Article published on StateAidHub: http://stateaidhub.eu, republished in e-Competitions with the courtesy of the author. The original title of this article appears below the e-Competitions title. Authors are welcome to write an alternative article on this case/text, provided they have no (...)

The EU Commission open an investigation concerning transfer pricing arrangements on corporate taxation of an online store in Luxembourg (Amazon)
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission investigates transfer pricing arrangements on corporate taxation of Amazon in Luxembourg* The European Commission has opened an in-depth investigation to examine whether the decision by Luxembourg’s tax authorities with regard to the corporate income tax to be paid by (...)

The EU Commission approves a French State aid scheme that subsidises legal downloads of music by French residents aged 12 to 25
DG COMP (Brussels)
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Hogan Lovells (Madrid)
State Aid: Main developments between 1 September and 31 December 2010* On 12 October 2010 the Commission approved a French scheme that subsidises legal downloads of music by French residents aged from 12 to 25 years. France proposed the creation of a Carte musique for young Internet users to (...)

The EU Commission approves public co-financing of broadband network covering the entire French department of Hauts-de-Seine, including the non-profitable areas
DG COMP (Brussels)
"State aid: main developments between 1 September and 31 December 2009"* On 30 September 2009, the European Commission approved public co-financing of the roll-out of a passive, neutral and open broadband network covering the entire French department of Hauts-de-Seine, including the (...)

The Danish Competition Authority decides on the existence of an unlawful aid in application of s. 11a Competition Act in relation to subsidies granted to an internet portal on the grounds that the commercial and non-commercial parts of the website were not sufficiently distinguished (Portal Fyn.dk)
Lexxion Publisher
Factual Background The internet portal was developed in 2003 with the purpose of promoting the island of Funen as an attractive place to live, work and visit. The portal contains all kinds of information of both commercial and non-commercial nature (ranging from information on education, (...)

Procedures

The Beijing High People’s Court releases guidelines on the trial of Internet-related intellectual property right cases
University of Melbourne
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China Competition Bulletin (Beijing)
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Hogan Lovells (Beijing)
On 13 April 2016, the Beijing High People’s Court released the Guideline on the Trial of Internet-Related Intellectual Property Right Cases. The guideline contains 42 provisions, covering copyright, trademark, and unfair competition issues. Specifically, there are two competition-related (...)

The Bulgarian Supreme Administrative Court confirms Commission on Competition’s decision of the decision ordering for a transportation company to suspend operations in Bulgaria for immediate enforcement (Uber)
Johnson & Johnson (Sofia)
On September 23, 2015 the five-member panel of the Bulgarian Supreme Administrative Court confirmed the decision of the Commission on Protection of Competition for immediate enforcement of the decision ordering for Uber to suspend operations in Bulgaria. On June 30, 2015, the CPC adopted its (...)

The Brussels Commercial Court issues injunction order against recently launched peer-to-peer car sharing service on the taxi market in Brussels (UberPop)
Steve Szentesi Law Corporation (Vancouver)
Competition & Taxis: A Few Uber Updates & Why Taxis are Like Typewriters* I’m getting closer to being a middle-aged guy – well, closer to middle age than a young guy. As such, I remember some of those things that commercials sometimes mock middle aged guys (or older guys than me yet) for (...)

The Hungarian Competition Authority initiates an inquiry into the online room reservation sector
European Commission (Brussels)
Hungary: Launch of Inquiry into Online Room Reservations Sector* On 29 July 2013, the GVH (the Hungarian Competition Authority) initiated an inquiry into the online room reservation sector. The objective pursued by the GVH is to become familiar with and evaluate the processes involved in the (...)

The UK High Court opts for targeted disclosure in private stand-alone claim against web search engine provider (Foundem / Google)
The University of Manchester
Background On 30 November 2010, the EU Commission (the “Commission”) announced that it had opened an investigation into allegations that Google has abused its dominant position, contrary to Article 102 TFEU, following multiple complaints. On 21 May 2012, the Commission published its preliminary (...)

The French Competition Authority issues negative opinion on government proposal establishing ’good practices’ for online delivery of medicinal products
European Commission (Brussels)
France: The Autorité de la concurrence issues negative Opinion on Government Proposal establishing ‘Good Practices’ for Online Delivery of Medicinal Products* On 10 April 2013, the Autorité de la concurrence (the Autorité) issued an opinion on a draft ministerial order establishing ‘good (...)

The UK Competition Appeal Tribunal dismisses appeal to seek review of the OFT decision concerning extended warranties website (John Lewis)
The University of Manchester
Background of the case John Lewis plc (“JLP”) case rules out a dispute about the information that should appear on a price comparison website that is related to extended warranties (“EW”) for TVs, washing machines and other domestic electrical goods (“DEGs”). This stems from the Office of Fair (...)

The French Competition Authority announces the launch of a pharma sector inquiry
JPTT & Partners
,
White & Case (Paris)
,
Novartis (Rueil-Malmaison)
On 26 February 2013, the French Competition Authority (“Autorité de la concurrence”) announced the launch of a pharma sector inquiry. The Autorité ’s main goal is to address the cost of prescription medicines for social security, the high prices of non-reimbursable medicines, and the low level of (...)

The French Competition Authority publishes the results of a sector inquiry into e-commerce
European Commission (Brussels)
France: The Autorité de la concurrence publishes Results of Sector Inquiry into e-commerce* On 18 September 2012, the Autorité de la concurrence (the Autorité) published the findings of its inquiry into e-commerce which 30 million French people have used in 2011. Focus was put on electrical (...)

The Ontario Court of Appeal challenges over potentially defamatory language in website press release posting (TPG Technology Consulting / Donald Powell / Canada)
Université d’Ottawa - University of Ottawa
Introduction The Ontario Court of Appeal (the "court") said Canada’s Competition Bureau (the "Bureau"), which assists the Commissioner of Competition in the administration and enforcement of the Competition Act (the "Act"), used potentially defamatory language in a 2009 press release website (...)

DG Competition Head of Unit Per Hellström confirms that the role of standards is likely to gain prominence in the next European Commission
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
Several developments that took place during December 2009 suggest that the issue of standards-setting is one that is currently of renewed interest to the European Commission, and likely to remain that way under the next Commission. Speaking during a conference held in Brussels on 3 December (...)

The EU Commission prepares the questionnaires for the reassessment of the competition rules applicable to Internet commerce
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
It has been reported that the Commission is currently preparing questionnaires in the context of its reassessment of the competition rules applicable to Internet commerce in view of the expiry of the Vertical Agreements Block Exemption Regulation in May 2010. These questionnaires will be sent (...)

The EU Commission publishes comments on its e-commerce “issues paper”
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
The European Commission recently published on its website comments it has received from industry on an internet commerce “issues paper” published by DG Competition in September 2008. Respondents as diverse as, among others, the British Sky Broadcasting Group, Estée Lauder, Google, Hewlett-Packard, (...)

Regulations

The Australian Competition Authority launches an inquiry into digital platforms
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
ACCC commences inquiry into digital platforms* The Federal Government has today formally directed the ACCC to commence an inquiry into digital platform providers such as Facebook and Google. The ACCC’s inquiry will look at the effect that digital search engines, social media platforms and (...)

The German Competition Authority publishes a paper on ’Big Data and Competition’ as Big Data and digital markets remain in the focus of EU competition authorities
Hogan Lovells (Munich)
,
Hogan Lovells (Munich)
I. Introduction On 6 October, the German Federal Cartel Office (’FCO’) launched its new series of papers on ’Competition and Consumer Protection in the Digital Economy’. The first paper deals with ’Big Data and Competition’. The same day, a ’real-life example’ of competition enforcement in Big Data (...)

EU Court of Justice Advocate General Szpunar delivers his opinion in a case regarding the concept of information society service (Uber Spain)
Martinez Lage, Allendesalazar & Brokelmann (Madrid)
Quo Vadis EU law on e-platforms? A comment on the Advocate General’s Opinion in the Uber Spain Case. 1. Introduction: Background of the case In 2014, Uber launched its UberPOP service in Barcelona and Madrid. UberPOP enables users of Uber’s App to request a transport service from (...)

The EU Commission publishes a report on online hotel booking platforms in collaboration with several national competition authorities
DG COMP (Brussels)
The European Commission publishes the results of an exercise, carried out by the Autorité de la concurrence and 9 other national European competition authorities, which assess the effects of the remedies adopted in Europe in the online hotel booking sector.* Background Following the (...)

The French Competition Authority issues an unfavourable opinion concerning draft orders on online sales of medicinal products
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence issues an unfavourable opinion to the government.* The envisaged "good practice" create a discriminatory system in comparison with the conditions required for over-the-counter sales, removing all interest in the sale medicinal products on the Internet, both for (...)

The French Competition Authority publishes an opinion regarding the implementation of a new online taxi reservation platform (Le.taxi)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité has published the opinion issued to the Government on the implementation of the Le.taxi platform* Following publication of the texts launching the Le.taxi service, the Autorité de la concurrence has published the opinion it issued to the Government. Subject to compliance with a (...)

The French Competition Authority receives commitments from a railway company aiming at ending the competition concerns identified in the distribution of train tickets sector (SNCF / voyages-sncf.com)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The SNCF makes progress on the path to the equitable treatment of its voyages-sncf.com website and travel agencies* Within the scope of a procedure initiated before the Autorité de la concurrence, SNCF has proposed a series of commitments designed to make voyages-sncf.com and competing travel (...)

The French Competition Authority issues an opinion on the analysis of the wholesale fast and superfast broadband markets (ARCEP)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence delivers its opinion to ARCEP as part of the fourth round of analysis of the wholesale fast and superfast broadband markets.* Following a referral by the French Telecommunications and Posts Regulator (hereinafter ARCEP), the Autorité de la concurrence today (...)

The French Competition Authority accepts the commitments of the holder of a legal monopoly over horserace bets placed in physical outlets, to separate its online horserace betting activity from its point of sale network (Betclic / PMU)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence has obtained a commitment from the PMU, which will separate its online horserace betting activity from its network of points of sale under monopoly. With this decision, the Autorité ensures that diversified legal supply is maintained, to the consumer’s benefit, on (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority allows blocking certain internet services on board trains of the national railway company as an exception from the net neutrality rule (T-Mobile)
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (The Hague)
Telecom company T-Mobile is allowed to restrict free internet access on board trains* The Netherlands Authority for Consumer and Markets (ACM) has concluded that Dutch telecom company T-Mobile is allowed to block certain services such as YouTube and Spotify on the free Wi-Fi-network on board (...)

The French Competition Authority issues an opinion following its sector inquiry on the distribution of medicinal products
French Competition Authority (Paris)
After gathering market players’ insight, and having carried out an in-depth analysis of how the sector operates, the Autorité de la concurrence publishes its opinion.* It calls for the stimulation of competition throughout the distribution chain, and in particular supports the supervised (...)

The French Competition Authority receives commitments from the incumbent betting company in order to distinguish its online horserace betting activities from those dealing with horserace betting in physical outlets (Betclic / PMU)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
PMU proposes commitments in order to distinguish its online horserace betting activities from those dealing with horserace betting in physical outlets* Following a complaint lodged by Betclic Everest Group (hereinafter Betclic) with the Autorité de la concurrence, the PMU proposed separating (...)

The OECD holds a roundtable on competition and payment systems
OECD - Competition Division
Executive summary, by the Secretariat In light of the written submissions and the oral discussion, the following points emerge: (1) An aim of competition enforcement is to identify, stop and deter anti-competitive arrangements and behaviour by market participants, particularly when it has a (...)

The OECD holds a roundtable on digital economy
OECD - Competition Division
The digital economy enables and executes the trade of goods and services through electronic commerce on the Internet. It is a very substantial driver of economic growth and an increasing source of work for competition authorities. Understanding competition in digital markets was the main (...)

The French Competition Authority issues a number of recommendations on the roll-out of very high speed broadband over optical fiber networks
French Competition Authority (Paris)
At the request of the Senate, the Autorité de la concurrence reminds public authorities of the competitive framework within which they can participate in the roll-out of very high speed broadband via "integrated projects". It issues a number of recommendations to prevent the risk for public (...)

The Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) publishes a draft on internet information service rules
University of Melbourne
,
China Competition Bulletin (Beijing)
,
Institute of American Studies
Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT): Provisions on the Administration of Internet Information Services (Draft for Comments)* The MIIT published and invited public comments on the draft Provisions on the Administration of Internet Information Services (Internet Information (...)

The French Competition Authority welcomes social tariff for broadband internet access
European Commission (Brussels)
France: The Autorité de la concurrence welcomes social Tariff for broadband Internet Access* Pursuant to a request of the French Minister of Economy, the French Competition Authority, Autorité de la concurrence (the Autorité), issued on 29 June 2011 an opinion on a bill on the implementation of a (...)

The French Competition Authority issues its first opinion on the telecom sector, taking into account the EU Commission’s recommendation concerning competitive aspects of wholesale broadband internet services
European Commission (Brussels)
France: The Autorité de la concurrence issues its first Opinion on the Telecom Sector, taking into account the recently published European Commission’s NGA Recommendation* On 8 March 2011, following a request by the French telecom sector regulator (ARCEP), the Autorité de la concurrence (the (...)

The French Competition Authority clarifies the opinion it provided to the the French Telecommunications and Posts Regulator on the high and very high speed Internet access coverage
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence provides clarifications regarding the opinion that it provided to the ARCEP on the ramp-up of access speed.* On 22 December 2009, the Autorité de la concurrence provided the French Telecommunications and Posts Regulator (Autorité de Régulation des Communications (...)

The EU Parliament adopts the telecoms reform package overhauling the EU’s current regulatory framework for electronic communications
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 25 November 2009, the European Parliament formally approved the “Telecoms Reform Package”, proposed by the Commission in November 2007, to reform the EU’s current regulatory framework for electronic communications. In a press release issued on the same day, the Commission has welcomed the final (...)

The EU Commission holds a roundtable on online music distribution an publishes a joint statement signed by key industry players
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 19 October 2009, the participants of a European Commission Roundtable on the online distribution of music signed a joint statement setting out general principles that aim to underpin the online distribution of music in the future. Participants in the Roundtable comprised Amazon, BEUC, EMI, (...)

The Swedish Competition Authority publishes a report on collective instalment of broadband internet or cable-TV
European Commission (Brussels)
Sweden: Research Report on Collective Instalment of Broadband Internet or Cable-TV In October 2009, the Swedish Competition Authority published a report in which an economic analysis of the effects on competition from collective instalment of broadband internet or cable TV was carried out. (...)

The French Competition Authority issues an opinion on TV content access exclusivity offers by Internet service providers
French Competition Authority (Paris)
TV content access exclusivity offers by Internet service providers: The Autorité de la concurrence states its position*. Exclusive access must remain an exceptional solution, strictly limited in time and scope. Auto-distribution appears to be a satisfactory balancing solution, to the benefit (...)

The Paris Court of First Instance considers that a leading online auctions website must benefit from the “host” legal status created under French Law for online platforms (L’Oréal / eBay)
EDHEC (Lille)
eBay Inc., technical host of the website ebay.fr, eBay International, which runs the services proposed on ebay.fr, eBay Europe, which is the co-contractor of sellers and buyers (located in the EU) on eBay, eBay France, which is the advertising agency and the contact of French internet users of (...)

The EU Commission holds a roundtable on Internet commerce
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
According to a Commission’s Press Release of 17 October 2008, the Commission held a roundtable with consumer and industry representatives in order to discuss the need to reform the competition rules applicable to Internet commerce. This group of stakeholders will produce a report for the (...)

The Paris Court of appeals rules that Google makes an illegal use of trademarks through its keywords advertising program (GIFAM / Google)
Google (Paris)
Google has been sued in France by several household appliance manufacturers and their professional union, and fined for using said manufacturers’ trademarks in its keywords advertising tool. Among thirty decisions issued by French courts against the search engine over its AdWords service, this (...)

The EU Commission launches a consultation to boost online content market
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 3 January 2008, the European Commission adopted a Communication entitled “Creative Content Online in the Single Market”, which is intended to address some of the major issues raised by online distribution of creative content. The Communication also launched a public consultation with a view to (...)

The Polish Supreme Court issues a controversial judgment setting strict restrictions for registration of Internet publications (Szycie po Przemysku)
Kochanski Zieba Rapala & Partners
The Supreme Court decision related to internet publications may cause restrictions in freedom of competition within the internet publications market. Surprisingly, the restrictions will base not on the provisions of law but on the judicial decision. In detail the situation is even more (...)

The Polish telecom regulator wishes to impose ex ante obligations on Internet interconnection (Telekomunikacja Polska)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Background reminder The Internet is often called the “network of networks”. A local Internet Service Provider (ISP) wishing to offer Internet services to end-users has to connect with other networks in order to allow his end-users to exchange traffic with other end users or content providers (...)

The French Competition Authority issues an opinion on the broadband access market delivered on the national market (ARCEP)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Conseil de la concurrence to lift ex ante regulation on the market for national broadband access.* As part of the market analysis procedure set up by the code of postal and electronic communications law, the Conseil de la concurrence, which was referred to on 25 and 6 October 2006, has just (...)

The EU Commission launches a sector inquiry into the sale of sports rights to Internet and 3G mobile operators
Cisco (Paris)
,
Hellenic Competition Authority (Athens)
"Using the instrument of sector-wide inquiries: inquiry into content for 3G services"* 1. The importance of a proactive approach in the antitrust field, especially regarding emerging markets DG Competition has launched a comprehensive rethinking of the use of its instruments. This has been (...)

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