Bulletin
Latest News issue: July 2020

General antitrust

The Irish Competition Authority releases its 2019 annual report New
Irish Competition Authority (Dublin)
CCPC Publishes 2019 Annual Report* The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) has today published our 2019 Annual Report. The report details the work of the CCPC in 2019 and highlights the impactful and varied role which the organisation plays across the economy. Isolde Goggin (...)

The Croatian Competition Authority releases its 2019 annual report New
Croatian Competition Agency (Zagreb)
Annual Report of the Croatian Competition Agency for 2019* The Annual Report for 2019 outlines the CCA activities in the previous year and informs the political scene, the economic operators and all professional stakeholders about the operation of the CCA in 2019, ensuring the transparency (...)

The UK Competition Authority takes part in a paper exploring the consequences for competition of the COVID-19 pandemic New Free
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
How should competition policy react to coronavirus?* IPPR has today published a paper by CMA Chairman Andrew Tyrie, discussing how competition policy can contribute to a robust and sustainable post-crisis recovery. The paper - How should competition policy react to coronavirus? - explores (...)

The German Government further tightens its national foreign direct investment screening regime and introduces sanction mechanisms for non-compliance (AWG) New
Morgan Lewis (Frankfurt)
,
Morgan Lewis (Frankfurt)
The updated German Foreign Trade and Payments Act enters into effect on July 17 and is the second of three major steps planned for 2020 to reform Germany’s foreign direct investment regime. The updated German Foreign Trade and Payments Act (Außenwirtschaftsgesetz (AWG)) includes the necessary (...)

The EU Commission launches a sector inquiry into the market for consumer products and services linked to the Internet of Things (IoT) New
Baker McKenzie (Brussels)
,
Baker McKenzie (Brussels)
,
Baker McKenzie (London)
In brief The European Commission (Commission) has launched a sector inquiry into the market for consumer products and services linked to the Internet of Things (IoT). This marks the start of an intensive information gathering process in which hundreds of companies will be asked for information (...)

The EU Commission launches a sector inquiry into the consumer-related devices and services that are connected through a network and can be controlled wirelessly (IoT) New
Covington & Burling (Brussels)
,
Covington & Burling (Brussels)
,
Covington & Burling (London)
On July 16, 2020, the European Commission (“Commission”) announced that it has launched an antitrust sector inquiry into "consumer-related products and services that are connected to a network and can be controlled at a distance, for example via a voice assistant or mobile device." Commission (...)

The UK Competition Authority publishes its annual report 2019/2020 New
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
CMA publishes Annual Report 2019/2020* The CMA has published its Annual Report, highlighting the wide range of work the UK competition and consumer authority has carried out in the past year. Throughout the year, the CMA delivered a substantial volume of work to ensure effective enforcement (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority calls for multiple national regulators to adopt measures to increase competition in the gasoline markets
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
The implementation of regulation in gasoline markets should incentivize competition in order to reduce its final price to the public: COFECE* The Commission issued an opinion where it proposes that SENER, SE, CRE and CONAMER adopt measures to increase competition in the gasoline markets. The (...)

The German Competition Authority opens a sector inquiry into publicly accessible charging infrastructure for electric vehicles
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Sector inquiry on publicly accessible charging infrastructure for electric vehicles* The Bundeskartellamt has initiated a sector inquiry on the provision and marketing of publicly accessible charging infrastructure for electric vehicles. Andreas Mundt, President of the Bundeskartellamt: “In (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority publishes draft guidelines for assessing the compatibility of sustainability initiatives with competition law New
Bird & Bird (The Hague)
,
Bird & Bird (Amsterdam)
Dutch competition authority offers more leeway for environmental sustainability initiatives* Introduction On 9 July 2020 the Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (‘ACM’) published its draft sustainability guidelines (‘Draft Guidelines’) containing ACM’s proposed approach of assessing (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority offers more leeway for environmental sustainability initiatives with competition law New
Bird & Bird (Amsterdam)
,
Bird & Bird (The Hague)
Introduction On 9 July 2020 the Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (‘ACM’) published its draft sustainability guidelines (‘Draft Guidelines’) containing ACM’s proposed approach of assessing the compatibility of sustainability initiatives with competition law. A new feature in the Draft (...)

The Italian Competition Authority report to Parliament and the Government on the Relaunch Decree related to COVID-19 Free
Italian Competition Authority (Rome)
S3940 - ICA: report to Parliament and the Government on Relaunch Decree issues At the meeting held on the 1st July 2020, the Authority resolved, pursuant to article 21 of Italian Law no. 287/1990, to report certain provisions of Italian Decree Law no. 34 of 19 May 2020 on Urgent measures (...)

The Italian Competition Authority provides feedback on the governmental report regarding the development of ultra-wideband fixed and mobile telecommunication infrastructure, with a view to promoting investment and competition
Italian Competition Authority (Rome)
S3904 - ICA: removing obstacles to the development of the ultra-wide bands. Report to Parliament, the Government, AGCOM and ANCI* At the meeting of the 1st July 2020, the Italian Competition Authority [Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato] decided to address a report to the (...)

The EU Commission publishes its 2019 annual activity report New
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 25 June 2020, the European Commission’s Directorate-General of Competition (“DG Competition”) published its 2019 Annual Activity Report. In the foreword, Olivier Guersent, Director-General of DG Competition, expresses the view that creating “European Champions” would be a mistake as all companies (...)

The Polish Government amends the national foreign investments control scheme and obliges investors from outside the EEA or from non-OECD countries to notify their transaction New
Hansberry Tomkiel (Warsaw)
LEAD: Pursuant to the recently amended Polish rules on the control of investments, the Polish Competition Authority (UOKiK) is empowered to review intended investments in Polish companies by investors who are: i) from outside of the European Economic Area, or ii) from non-OECD countries. Such (...)

The French Competition Authority publishes a study on competition and e-commerce New
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 5 June 2020, the French Competition Authority (“FCA”) published a study on competition and e-commerce. The study highlights that digital technologies have considerably changed the commerce and distribution landscape. Many offline retailers are now marketing their products and services online (...)

The French Competition Authority publishes a study on e-commerce and competition law New
Bird & Bird (Paris)
,
Bird & Bird (Paris)
E-commerce is an essential distribution channel with specific features to which the competition authorities had to adapt. Reflections on the impact of e-commerce has never been more relevant than today, as the global COVID-19 health crisis has boosted online sales. In this context, the French (...)

The UK High Court rules that complying with a court-ordered disclosure in patent infringement proceedings between pharmaceutical companies does not breach competition law (Teva / Chiesi) New
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 2 June 2020, the UK High Court delivered a judgment in a case pitting pharmaceutical companies Teva UK Limited (“Teva”) against Chiesi Farmaceutici (“Chiesi”) in which Mr Justice Birss ruled that complying with a court-ordered disclosure in patent infringement proceedings does not breach Article (...)

The Indian Competition Authority holds a roundup covering the main developments of the past two months
Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas (New Delhi)
,
Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas (New Delhi)
,
Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas (New Delhi)
Indian Competition Law Roundup: April-May 2020* In this Roundup, we highlight the main developments in Indian competition law in April and May 2020. The COVID-19 Response The CCI is Open for Business As stated in our April update on ‘Indian Competition Law and COVID-19’, the Competition (...)

The Belgian Competition Authority adopts new guidelines regarding the calculation of fines, leniency applications and on the informal opinions of the Competition’s Authority President New
Bird & Bird (Brussels)
,
Bird & Bird (Brussels)
On 22 May 2020 the Belgian Competition Authority (BCA) published three new guidelines: (i) new guidelines regarding the informal opinions of the BCA’s President; (ii) new guidelines regarding the calculation of fines; and (iii) new leniency guidelines. Below we set out the most important (...)

The OECD reports on foreign direct investment flows regulation in EU member states during the COVID-19 pandemic New Free
Addleshaw Goddard (London)
,
Addleshaw Goddard (London)
,
Addleshaw Goddard (London)
UK FDI Hub: COVID-19 and foreign direct investment regulation* Introduction The OECD reports that even if economies begin recovering in the second half of the year, foreign direct investment (FDI) flows are expected to fall more than 30% in 2020 from 2019 levels, as a result of the policy (...)

The German Competition Authority demands better information for consumers on the data processed by smart TVs
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt demands better information for consumers on the data processed by smart TVs within the scope of its competencies in the area of consumer protection* Today the Bundeskartellamt has published the final report on its sector inquiry into smart TVs. Smart TVs are web-enabled TV (...)

The UK Competition Authority publishes a series of regulatory initiatives aimed at online platforms focussed on digital advertising and signals a new path for UK clampdown on big techs due to the current inadequate competition law toolkit
Shearman & Sterling (London)
,
Shearman & Sterling (London)
,
Shearman & Sterling (Brussels)
On 1 July 2020, the U.K. Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) published a statement outlining a series of regulatory initiatives aimed at Google and Facebook, focussed on digital advertising. This follows the release of the CMA’s report on digital advertising and online platforms the same (...)

The UK Competition Authority calls for a new regime regulating tech giants
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
New regime needed to take on tech giants* The CMA is calling on the government to introduce a new pro-competition regulatory regime to tackle Google and Facebook’s market power. The dynamic nature of digital advertising markets and the types of concerns identified by the Competition and (...)

The EU Commission opens public consultation on the market definition Notice used in EU competition law and whether an update is required
DG COMP (Brussels)
Competition: Commission consults stakeholders on the Market Definition Notice* The European Commission has published today a public consultation on the Market Definition Notice used in EU competition law. The open questionnaire will contribute to the Commission’s evaluation of the Notice to (...)

The US DoJ signs historic memorandum of understanding with the Securities and Exchange Commission
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Justice Department’s Antitrust Division And The Securities And Exchange Commission Sign Historic Memorandum Of Understanding* The Department of Justice’s Antitrust Division and the Securities and Exchange Commission have signed an interagency Memorandum of Understanding (“MOU”) to foster (...)

The Polish Government adopts legislation under which transactions involving Polish companies and non-EEA investors would be subject to a new clearance obligation Free
Bird & Bird (Warsaw)
,
Bird & Bird (Warsaw)
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the looming economic crisis, Poland is currently adopting legislation, under which transactions involving certain Polish companies and non-EEA investors would be subject to a new clearance obligation. This legislation also temporarily adopts the FDI Screening (...)

The EU Commission works on legislative proposals that would empower it to tackle competition distortions involving foreign government subsidies operating in or entering into the EU’s Internal Market
Morgan Lewis (Brussels)
,
Morgan Lewis (Brussels)
The European Commission (EC) is currently working on legislative proposals (the White Paper) that would grant the EC new enforcement powers to address potential competition distortions caused by companies operating in or entering into the EU’s Internal Market, which benefit from subsidies from (...)

The EU Commission proposes to grant new enforcement powers to the Commission to address competition distortions caused by companies benefiting from subsidies from third-country governments
Morgan Lewis (Brussels)
,
Morgan Lewis (Brussels)
The European Commission has published a White Paper proposing to grant the Commission new enforcement powers to address competition distortions caused by companies operating in, or entering into, the European Union’s Internal Market, which benefit from subsidies from third-country governments. (...)

The EU Commission proposes new powers of investigation, sanction and control on mergers, market conduct and public contracts to combat foreign subsidies
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
,
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
,
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
The European Commission (EC) has proposed far-reaching new powers to investigate and sanction foreign subsidies that have allegedly distortive effects on the European Union’s (EU) internal market. The proposals include: (i) mandatory notification of acquisitions, including potentially minority (...)

The EU Commission releases a white paper consulting on leveling the playing field as regards foreign subsidies
Kirkland & Ellis (London)
,
Kirkland & Ellis (London)
,
Kirkland & Ellis (London)
The Commission’s White Paper on Foreign Subsidies* 1. Overview On 17 June 2020, the European Commission (“EC”) issued a White Paper consulting on “Levelling the Playing Field as regards Foreign Subsidies”. These are major new proposals to protect EU companies against perceived unfair advantage (...)

The OECD holds a roundtable on consumer data rights and competition
OECD - Competition Division (Paris)
Privacy and consumer data rights are gaining more attention across the globe as more and more consumers come to rely on the services offered in the digital economy. Consumer data rights can include fundamental rights to privacy, as well as regulations controlling the manner in which consumers (...)

Anticompetitive practices

The Lithuanian Competition Authority updates rules on fines and adopts rules on cooperation with EU counterparts New
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
Lithuanian Competition Authority updates rules on immunity from fines or their reduction and adopts rules on cooperation with EU counterparts* In relation to the amendments to the Law on Competition adopted by the Seimas, today the Lithuanian competition authority Konkurencijos taryba has (...)

The French Competition Authority launches a market consultation to assess the proposal of a company in the toy retail sector to modify its pricing policy (Lego) New
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
Lego proposes commitments to the Autorité to modify its pricing policy* The Autorité launches a market consultation to assess this proposal. Cdiscount and EMC Distribution (Casino Group’s reference listing offices) lodged a complaint with the Autorité de la concurrence regarding practices (...)

The Australian Competition Authority proposes to continue to allow airlines to cooperate on regional routes due to COVID-19 pandemic New
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
ACCC proposes to continue to allow airlines to cooperate on regional routes* Regional Express Pty Ltd (Rex) will be allowed to continue to coordinate flight schedules with Qantas and Virgin Australia on 10 regional routes (the relevant routes) in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, under an (...)

The Portuguese Competition Authority issues a statement of objections to six waste management companies for non-competition agreement (Blueotter / EGEO) New
Portuguese Competition Authority (Lisbon)
AdC issues Statement of Objections to six waste management companies for non-competition agreement* The AdC issued a Statement of Objections to six companies and six board members of the waste management groups Blueotter and EGEO with respect to a non-competition agreement, forbidden by (...)

The New Zealand Competition Authority reaches a settlement in equine air freight price-fixing proceeding (IRT Partnership) New
New Zealand Commerce Commission
Settlement reached in equine air freight price-fixing proceeding* A settlement has been reached with the International Racehorse Transport New Zealand Partnership (IRT Partnership) in a price fixing case arising from an arrangement between IRT Partnership and its competitor for the provision (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority reports that smaller businesses, especially in the transport sector, are less aware of competition rules New
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (The Hague)
Smaller businesses in particular lag behind in their awareness of distortion of competition* Most companies that are active in the Dutch ports and in port-related markets say they comply with the rules on fair competition. Yet, smaller companies in particular do not know the rules very well. (...)

The US DoJ issues a letter for monoclonal antibody manufacturers to expand their production during the COVID-19 pandemic and allows exchange of information New
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Department Of Justice Issues Business Review Letter To Monoclonal Antibody Manufacturers To Expedite And Increase The Production Of Covid-19 Mab Treatments* The United States Department of Justice announced today that it will not challenge proposed efforts by Eli Lilly and Company, AbCellera (...)

The US DoJ charges sixth pharmaceutical company for fixing prices, allocating customers an bid-rigging in the ongoing investigation into the generic pharmaceutical industry (Taro Pharmaceuticals) New
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Sixth Pharmaceutical Company Charged In Ongoing Criminal Antitrust Investigation* Fifth Company to Admit It Fixed Prices of Generic Drugs Taro Pharmaceuticals U.S.A., Inc. (Taro U.S.A.) has been charged for conspiring to fix prices, allocate customers, and rig bids for generic drugs, the (...)

The Italian Competition Authority launches an investigation on two giant tech companies for implementing a competition-restricting agreement (Apple / Amazon) New
Italian Competition Authority (Rome)
ICA: investigation launched against Apple and Amazon for banning the sale of Apple- and Beats-branded products to retailers who do not join the official programme* Italian Competition Authority launched an investigation pursuant to Article 101 TFUE against the companies in the Apple Inc. and (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority investigates on services for maritime passenger transportation (State of Quintana Roo) New
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE investigates competition conditions in the services for maritime passenger transportation in routes with origin and/or destination in the northern zone of the state of Quintana Roo* On July 13, 2020, the Investigative Authority agreed that in the said market it is necessary to determine (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority fines roofing contractors for bid-rigging (Schadenberg / Van Venrooy) New
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (The Hague)
Roofing contractors fined for distortion of competition in tender process* The Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) has fined two roofing contractors for distorting competition in a tender process. An Amsterdam-based firm wanted to get the best price for a roof renovation (...)

The French Competition Authority fines 12 manufacturers for cartel in the ham and cold meat sector (Charcuterie cartel)
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
The Autorité hands out fines worth 93 million euros to a cartel in the ham and cold meats (charcuterie) sector* The manufactures involved (“cold meat manufacturers”) worked in concert in order to purchase cuts of ham from slaughterhouses at lower prices and/or were fixing the price increases for (...)

The Portuguese Competition Authority issues statement of objections to 4 telecom undertakings for cartel to limit competition in online advertising (MEO / NOS / NOWO / Vodafone)
Portuguese Competition Authority (Lisbon)
AdC issues Statement of Objections to MEO, NOS, NOWO and Vodafone for cartel to limit competition in online advertising* The AdC issued a Statement of Objections to the telecommunications operators MEO - Serviços de Comunicações e Multimédia (MEO), NOS Comunicações, SA, NOWO - Communications, SA (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Authority fines national transport safety administration for extending contracts with 42 service providers without a competitive procedure (Lithuanian Transport Safety Administration)
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
Contract Extensions With Passenger Road Transport Service Providers Without a Competitive Procedure Restricted Competition* The Lithuanian competition authority Konkurencijos taryba has found that the Lithuanian transport safety administration (LTSA) infringed the Law on Competition when it (...)

The Australian Competition Authority proposes to allow supermarkets to continue cooperating on grocery supply during the COVID-19 pandemic Free
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
ACCC proposes to allow supermarkets to continue cooperating on grocery supply* Supermarket operators will be able to continue working together until March 2021 to ensure the continued supply of food and groceries during the COVID-19 pandemic, under the ACCC’s draft determination. “The ACCC (...)

The German Competition Authority allows cooperation between competing breweries in the production of Kölsch type of beer specific to the local market in Cologne due to resulting efficiency gains in production (Radeberger / Früh)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
No objections to cooperation between Radeberger and Früh for the production of Kölsch* The Bundeskartellamt has today announced that a cooperation between the Radeberger Group KG (“Radeberger“) and Cölner Hofbräu P. Josef Früh KG (“Früh”) for the production of Kölsch can been deemed to fulfil the legal (...)

The EU Commission fines ethylene purchasers €260 million in cartel settlement for colluding to buy at the lowest possible price (Orbia / Clariant / Celanese / Westlake)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission fines ethylene purchasers € 260 million in cartel settlement* The European Commission has fined Orbia, Clariant and Celanese a total of € 260 million for breaching EU antitrust rules. Westlake was not fined as it revealed the cartel to the Commission. The companies took (...)

The US DoJ applauds the International Competition Network’s new international leniency guidelines
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Antitrust Division Applauds New International Leniency Guidelines* New guidelines will increase effectiveness of international cartel enforcement through better cooperation The Antitrust Division helped lead the International Competition Network (ICN) initiative on cross-border leniency (...)

The UK Competition Authority fines 3 pharmaceutical companies £2.3M for anti-competitive agreement in the supply of life-saving drug fludrocortisone and secures £8M in damages for the National Health Service (Aspen / Tiofarma / Amilco)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
CMA levies fines of £2.3m and secures £8m for NHS in pharma probe* The CMA has formally concluded that 3 pharmaceutical companies took part in an illegal arrangement in relation to the supply of life-saving medicine. The investigation by the Competition and Markets Authority into the supply of (...)

The Australian Competition Authority allows competing public and private hospitals to continue cooperating in response to the COVID-19 pandemic Free
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
Private and public hospitals can continue cooperating on COVID-19* Private and public hospital operators, along with government health authorities in each Australian state and territory, will be able to continue working with each other in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, under the ACCC’s (...)

The UK Competition Authority fines 3 pharmaceutical companies for taking part in an illegal arrangement in relation to the supply of life-saving medicine (Aspen / Tiofarma / Amilco) New
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
CMA levies fines of £2.3m and secures £8m for NHS in pharma probe* The CMA has formally concluded that 3 pharmaceutical companies took part in an illegal arrangement in relation to the supply of life-saving medicine. The investigation by the Competition and Markets Authority into the supply of (...)

The German Competition Authority assists a national hospital institute in ensuring a competitive procurement process for licensing a new algorithm for invoicing hospital services (Institut für das Entgeltsystem im Krankenhaus - InEK)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt safeguards innovation with regard to software for the classification and invoicing of hospital services* The Bundeskartellamt successfully assisted the Institute for the Hospital Remuneration System (Institut für das Entgeltsystem im Krankenhaus, InEK) in ensuring that its (...)

The EU General Court orders that the fine imposed on a semiconductor manufacturer for its participation in a cartel in the smart card chip market be reduced by almost €6 million, from €82,784,000 to €76,871,600 (Infineon Technologies)
European Court of Justice (Luxembourg)
The General Court orders that the fine imposed on Infineon for its participation in a cartel in the smart card chip market be reduced by almost €6 million, from €82,784,000 to €76,871,600* The Commission took insufficient account of the limited number of the anticompetitive contacts which (...)

The Swedish Competition Authority accepts commitments from one training company to limit its use of exclusive agreements with fitness studios, and closes investigations into another 2 companies (Bruce / Classpass / Swiftr)
Swedish Competition Authority (Stockholm)
Swedish Competition Authority accepts commitments from training company* Bruce is a company that offers training services. The company has offered to limit its use of exclusive agreements with fitness studios in order to avoid that competition concerns arise. The Swedish Competition Authority (...)

The EU Commission announces the relaxation of competition rules for wine producers due to the COVID-19 pandemic New
Hogan Lovells (Brussels)
,
Hogan Lovells (Brussels)
EU wine producers can now benefit from a temporary relaxation in competition rules* The European wine sector has been greatly affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. According to statistics from the European Commission (EC), there has been a 30% reduction in the volume of wine sold and a 50% drop (...)

The Brazilian Competition Authority publishes general guidelines for competitor collaborations allowed during the COVID-19 crisis Free
Caminati Bueno Advogados (São Paulo)
,
Caminati Bueno Advogados (São Paulo)
,
Caminati Bueno Advogados (São Paulo)
On July 6th , the Brazilian Antitrust Authority (CADE) published the so-called “Provisional Informative Note” to guide the economic agents on the collaboration between companies to fight the Covid-19 crisis. The document (available here), awaited by the antitrust community, sets out general (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority alongside 4 other national regulators proposes a new law on public procurement to promote better public expenditure and revive the national economy
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
New Law on Public Procurement is Proposed to Promote Better Public Expenditure and to Revivify the Mexican Economy* Civil society organizations and public institutions specialized on public procurement join efforts to propose a General Law on Procurement that leads to full and timely public (...)

The Portuguese Competition Authority issues statements of objections to 6 large supermarket chains and 2 drink suppliers for price fixing (Modelo Continente / Pingo Doce / Auchan / Sumol+Compal / Sogrape / Lidl / Intermarché / E-Leclerc)
Portuguese Competition Authority (Lisbon)
New case in the retail sector: AdC issues Statements of Objections to six supermarket chains and two drink suppliers for price fixing, harmful to consumers* The AdC – Portuguese Competition Authority issued Statements of Objections to 6 large food retail chain groups and 2 suppliers, one of (...)

The Swedish Competition Authority fines 2 interior design companies with over SEK 500,000 for coordinating sales prices of furniture (Artilleriet Interiors / Royal Design Group)
Swedish Competition Authority (Stockholm)
Two companies consensually agree to pay administrative fines for engaging in unlawful cooperation* Two companies engaged in the sale of interior design, furniture, and home furnishing have consented to pay a fine order from the Swedish Competition Authority. The companies coordinated some of (...)

The Indian Competition Authority approves a deal between an online platform and a telecom network provider aiming at providing local grocery stores access to e-commerce services (Facebook / JIO) New
Saikrishna (New Delhi)
,
National University of Study and Research in Law (Ranchi)
Background The Indian antitrust watchdog Competition Commission of India (‘CCI’) approved the popular Facebook-JIO deal (‘the deal’) on June 25, 2020. The approval came two months after Facebook announced to invest whopping $5.7 billion in Reliance Industries Limited’s (‘RIL’) subsidiary JIO (...)

The Italian Competition Authority opens investigation into alleged anticompetitive agreement obstructing procurement of free films by film arenas (ANICA / ANEC / ANEC Lazio)
Italian Competition Authority (Rome)
I840 - ICA: launch of an investigation into Anica, Anec and Anec Lazio for obstructing the procurement of films, free of charge, by film arenas* The Authority launched an investigation into Associazione Nazionale Industrie Cinematografiche Audiovisive e Multimediali (ANICA), Associazione (...)

The Czech Competition Authority imposes fines for illegal cartel agreement in the rail freight transport market (AWT / Interfracht / Argo Logistics / Spedica) New
Bird & Bird (Prague)
,
Bird & Bird (Prague)
On 22 June 2020 the Czech Office for the Protection of Competition (Office) published a press release (without publishing the full decision yet) regarding fines imposed for concluding and executing a prohibited cartel agreement regarding train projects Carpathia, Sylvania, and New Carpathia. (...)

The Paris Court of Appeal rejects an appeal against a follow-on damages claim by a rival telecommunications provider and grants a reduction in the amount of damages to be paid (Orange / Digicel) New
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 17 June 2020, the Paris Court of Appeal rejected Orange’s (formerly known as France Telecom) appeal against a follow-on damages claim by rival telecommunications provider Digicel (formerly known as Bouygues Telecom) but granted a reduction in the amount of damages to be paid of nearly € 100 (...)

A Spanish Regional Court requests a preliminary ruling on the possibility of the retroactive application of the provisions concerning the period of limitation to bring damages action (Volvo / Trucks) New
Bird & Bird (Madrid)
,
Bird & Bird (Madrid)
The application of the transitional regime of the Damages Directive (No. 2014/104), of 26 November 2014, has created legal uncertainty regarding the statute of limitations of damages claims. On 12 June 2020, the Regional Court of León referred questions to the European Court of Justice (ECJ) (...)

The Italian Competition Authority approves a joint purchasing agreement of surgical masks via pharmacies and drugstores pursuant to its temporary rules on cooperation between companies during the COVID-19 pandemic New Free
Ashurst (Milan)
,
Ashurst (Brussels)
On 1 June 2020, the Italian Competition Authority ("ICA") approved a joint purchasing agreement of surgical masks via pharmacies/drugstores and a moratorium scheme on loan repayments agreed within ASSOFIN (the Italian Association of Consumer Credit and Mortgage Lending) pursuant to its (...)

The EU Commission publishes a report on the vertical block exemption regulation and the accompanying guidelines on vertical restraints New
Covington & Burling (Brussels)
,
Covington & Burling (Brussels)
On 25 May 2020, the European Commission (“Commission”) has published its Final Report of the support studies for the evaluation of its Vertical Block Exemption Regulation (“VBER”) and the accompanying Guidelines on Vertical Restraints (the “Final Report”). The Final Report was published following a (...)

The US antitrust enforcers warn of continued action against collusive conduct impacting workers in US labor markets during the pandemic New Free
Covington & Burling (Palo Alto)
,
Covington & Burling (Washington)
,
Covington & Burling (Washington)
The Department of Justice Antitrust Division and the Federal Trade Commission’s Bureau of Competition issued another reminder yesterday that the COVID-19 pandemic does not exempt companies from complying with federal antitrust laws. The agencies’ latest statement focuses on the labor force and (...)

The Hong Kong Competition Authority commences a public consultation on the commitments offered by three online travel agents to remove certain parity clauses in their contracts with accommodations providers (Booking.com / Expedia / Trip.com) New
Hogan Lovells (Hong Kong)
,
Hogan Lovells (Beijing)
,
Hogan Lovells (Hong Kong)
On 31 March 2020 the Hong Kong Competition Commission (HKCC) commenced a public consultation on the commitments offered by three online travel agents (OTAs) to remove certain parity clauses in their existing and future contracts with accommodation providers in Hong Kong. The consultation period (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority accepts commitments offered by a sports manufacturer and retailer following a complaint on the imposition of restrictions in the distribution network (Adidas / LDC)
Ashurst (Madrid)
,
Ashurst (Madrid)
,
Ashurst (Madrid)
The CNMC has accepted commitments offered by Adidas Spain ("Adidas") and closed the investigation that had been initiated in November 2018, following a complaint lodged by BCINCOPE (an Adidas franchisee), for an alleged infringement of articles 1 SCA and 101 TFEU in the Spanish retail market (...)

The UK Competition Authority fines a musical instrument manufacturer £4.5 million for engaging in illegal resale price maintenance on its online sales (Fender Europe) New
Ashurst (London)
On 22 January 2020, the Competition and Markets Authority (the "CMA") fined Fender Musical Instruments Europe Limited ("Fender Europe") GBP 4.5 million for engaging in illegal resale price maintenance ("RPM") in relation to the online sale of its guitars. WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW - KEY TAKEWAYS (...)

The UK Court of Appeal upholds the UK Competition’s Authority decision finding that a golf equipment supplier acted illegally by banning online sales of its products (Ping) New
Ashurst (London)
On 21 January 2020, the Court of Appeal of England and Wales handed down a judgment dismissing the appeal by Ping Europe Limited ("Ping") against a judgment of the Competition Appeal Tribunal ("CAT"), upholding the CMA’s 2017 decision that Ping’s online sales ban constituted a restriction of (...)

The US DoJ charges Louisiana company with conspiracy to defraud the Government and violate the Procurement Integrity Act (Cajan Welding & Rentals)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Louisiana Company Charged With Conspiracy To Defraud The Government And Violate The Procurement Integrity Act* United States Attorney Peter G. Strasser and Makan Delrahim, Assistant Attorney General for the Antitrust Division of the Department of Justice, announced that CAJAN WELDING & (...)

The Latvian Competition Authority finds that a state owned company’s procurement of road vehicle number plates production and supply is by default favoring one competitor in the bidding process (Road Traffic Safety Directorate)
Konkurences padome (Riga)
The CC: the car number plates procurement organised by CSDD is favourable for one company* During the market study, while investigating the procurement of road vehicle number plates production and supply, organised by state owned company “Road Traffic Safety Directorate” (CSDD), the Competition (...)

The Romanian Competition Authority releases for public consultation the new guide on vertical agreements
Romanian Competition Council (Bucharest)
The Competition Council Launches for Public Debates the Guide on Vertical Agreements* The Competition Council elaborated the "Guide on vertical agreements" in order to support companies that have to assess, on a case-by-case basis, the compatibility of the vertical agreements they wish to (...)

The UK Competition Authority imposes a £1.2m fine for price fixing in private eyecare (Spire)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
CMA imposes £1.2m in fines for price-fixing in private eyecare* The CMA has found that a private hospital group and 7 consultant ophthalmologists broke competition law by taking part in illegal price fixing. Following an investigation by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), Spire (...)

The Japanese FTC issues a cease and desist order against 3 distributors of high school uniforms in Toyota City, Aichi Prefecture for engaging in anticompetitive conduct (Gakuseinomise Mikusa Toyotaten / Kondo Yofukuten / Nonoyama Yofuku)
Japan Fair Trade Commission (Tokyo)
JFTC Issued Cease and Desist Orders against Uniform Distributors of Aichi Prefectural High Schools in Toyota City* JFTC today issued cease and desist orders pursuant to the provision of Paragraph 2, Article 7 of the Antimonopoly Act (hereinafter referred to as “AMA”) against the uniform (...)

The Irish Competition Authority warns businesses must act independently when setting prices during the re-opening phase of COVID-19 Free
Irish Competition Authority (Dublin)
CCPC warns businesses must act independently when setting prices during reopening phase* CCPC engages with trade associations following public statements to warn against co-ordination Any new prices & charges must adhere to competition and consumer protection law Consumers are entitled to (...)

The US DoJ charges fifth pharmaceutical company in ongoing criminal antitrust investigation into fixing prices of generic drugs (Glenmark Pharmaceuticals)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Fifth Pharmaceutical Company Charged In Ongoing Criminal Antitrust Investigation* Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Inc., USA was charged for conspiring to fix prices for generic drugs, the Department of Justice announced today. The charge, filed today in the U.S. District Court in Philadelphia, (...)

The EU Commission launches a process to address the issue of collective bargaining for the self-employed
DG COMP (Brussels)
Competition: The European Commission launches a process to address the issue of collective bargaining for the self-employed* The European Commission is launching today a process to ensure that the EU competition rules do not stand in the way of collective bargaining for those who need it. The (...)

The International Competition Network presents a scoping paper on big data and cartels analyzing the impact of digitalization in cartel enforcement
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
The International Competition Network presents a scoping paper on “Big Data and Cartels” analyzing the impact of digitalization in cartel enforcement* What does digitalization change in cartel enforcement? Over the past few years, there has been a wide debate about the new digital dimension of (...)

The Danish Competition Authority finds that a digital platform for professional service providers infringed competition law by object when its algorithm suggested minimum quotes that accountants and bookkeepers should charge clients on the platform (Ageras)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Danish Competition Council: Ageras has infringed competition law* This decision concerns the actions of the digital platform Ageras A/S (Ageras). Ageras offers a digital platform - www.ageras.dk – that allows users of professional services such as accounting, bookkeeping and legal services to (...)

The Peruvian Competition Authority publishes informational guidelines about anticompetitive agreements among companies in labor markets
Peruvian Competition Authority - INDECOPI (Lima)
Indecopi publishes informational guidance on the importance of respecting competition in labor markets* These Guidelines are aimed at companies, employers and human resources professionals and are intended to inform them about the risks of implementing anti-competitive agreements affecting (...)

The German Competition Authority clears online platform sales model of a brand’s competing brick-and-mortar retailers being allowed to sell on the same platform under the umbrella of the brand (Intersport)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt clears Intersport’s online platform sales model* The Bundeskartellamt has examined Intersport’s online platform sales model and has no objections under competition law. Based on the available information the Bundeskartellamt sees no need for an in-depth examination. Andreas (...)

The Portuguese Competition Authority issues a statement of objections to food retail groups and a supplier of pre-packaged bread and substitutes and cakes for price fixing (Modelo Continente / Pingo Doce / Auchan / Bimbo Donuts)
Portuguese Competition Authority (Lisbon)
AdC issues Statement of Objections to supermarket chains and bread supplier for price fixing, harmful to consumers* The AdC – Portuguese Competition Authority issued a Statement of Objections (SO) to three large food retail groups and a supplier of pre-packaged bread and substitutes and cakes, (...)

The French Competition Authority examines commitment proposals relating to agreements concluded between food retailers in the agricultural sector (Casino / Auchan / Metro / Schiever)
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
Purchasing Offices: The Autorité Examines Commitment Proposals* The Autorité de la concurrence launched several inquiries to examine the joint purchasing agreements in the food retail sector. It has received proposals for commitments relating to the agreements concluded between Casino, Auchan, (...)

The Danish Competition Authority finds the exchange of information on prices, discounts and quantities in relation to future sales between retailers of clothing items illegal (Hugo Boss / Kaufmann) (Hugo Boss / Ginsborg)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
The Danish Competition Council has adopted a decision finding the exchange of information on prices, discounts and quantities in relation to future sales between retailers of clothing items illegal* On June 24 2020, the Danish Competition Council (DCC) adopted two separate decisions concerning (...)

The Swedish Competition Authority fines a municipality for carrying out an illegal direct award of a building contract (Nynäshamn municipality)
Swedish Competition Authority (Stockholm)
Nynäshamn Municipality carried out an illegal direct award of a building contract* When Nynäshamn Municipality had a property rebuilt into a group residence, this was a building contract that should have been procured in accordance with the Public Procurement Act. The fact that the agreement was (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority offers guidance for collaborations between telecom operators in the roll-out of mobile networks
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (The Hague)
ACM offers guidance for collaborations between telecom operators in the roll-out of mobile networks* Well-functioning mobile services are crucial for the Netherlands. Data consumption in 2019 increased by more than 30% compared with 2018, and more than tenfold compared with five years ago. (...)

The Australian Competition Authority proposes to allow coal producers to collectively negotiate terms and conditions for access to the Port of Newcastle
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
Coal producers to be authorised to collectively negotiate with Port of Newcastle* The ACCC proposes to allow the NSW Minerals Council and ten coal producers to collectively negotiate the terms and conditions, including price, of access to the Port of Newcastle for the export of coal and other (...)

The Australian Federal Court sees Norwegian global shipping company plead guilty to criminal cartel conduct (Wallenius Wilhelmsen)
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
Wallenius Wilhelmsen pleads guilty to criminal cartel conduct* Norwegian-based global shipping company Wallenius Wilhelmsen Ocean AS (WWO) has today entered a guilty plea in the Federal Court to criminal cartel conduct. After an ACCC investigation, on 23 August 2019 the Commonwealth Director (...)

The UK Supreme Court finds payment card schemes used in supermarkets infringing competition law (Sainsbury’s / Visa & MasterCard)
Morgan Lewis (London)
,
Morgan Lewis (London)
,
Morgan Lewis (London)
On June 17, 2020, the UK Supreme Court handed down its judgment in the appeals on the lawfulness of multilateral interchange fees, or swipe fees, (MIFs) in Sainsbury’s Supermarkets Ltd (Respondent) v. Visa Europe Services LLC and Others (Appellants) and Sainsbury’s Supermarkets Ltd and Others (...)

The UK Supreme Court dismisses an appeal concerning two largest payment processing networks on the basis that their multilateral interchange fees restricted competition (Sainsbury’s / Visa & MasterCard)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 17 June 2020, the UK Supreme Court dismissed Mastercard and Visa’s appeal against a 2018 ruling by the Court of Appeal of England and Wales and ruled that their multilateral interchange fees (“MIFs”) unlawfully restricted competition. The Supreme Court’s ruling potentially exposes Mastercard and (...)

The Swedish Competition Authority fines a municipal company for illegal direct award of a contract and clarifies that there is no exception for artistic reasons (Örebrokompaniet)
Swedish Competition Authority (Stockholm)
No exception on artistic reasons when Örebrokompaniet purchased a light show* The exception for artistic performance was not applicable when Örebrokompaniet purchased event services without prior notice. The company is thus guilty of an illegal direct award of contract and the Swedish (...)

The US District Court for the Northern District of California sentences former CEO of canned tuna company to prison for price fixing (Christopher Lischewski / Bumble Bee Foods)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Former Bumble Bee CEO Sentenced To Prison For Fixing Prices Of Canned Tuna* Christopher Lischewski, former Chief Executive Officer and President of Bumble Bee Foods LLC, was sentenced to serve 40 months in jail and pay a $100,000 criminal fine for his leadership role in a three-year antitrust (...)

The Peruvian Supreme Court confirms the Competition’s Authority sanctions imposed on a medical oxygen cartel for bid-rigging by a national health insurer’s public tenders (Messer Gases / Linde Gas / Praxair)
Peruvian Competition Authority - INDECOPI (Lima)
The Supreme Court of Justice confirmed the sanction imposed by Indecopi to the Medical Oxygen Cartel* The Permanent Constitutional and Social Law Chamber of the Supreme Court has declared unfounded the cassation appeals filed by the companies Messer Gases del Perú S.A., Linde Gas Perú S.A. and (...)

The US DoJ announces a $100,000 fine and a sentence to 40 months in prison a former CEO for his role in a tuna price-fixing conspiracy involving two competitors (Bumble Bee Foods)
Hogan Lovells (Washington)
,
Hogan Lovells (Washington)
,
Hogan Lovells (Washington)
On 16 June 2020, the former CEO of Bumble Bee Foods LLC was sentenced to 40 months in prison and fined US$100,000 for his role in a tuna price-fixing conspiracy involving two competitors. This sentence is one of the most significant penalties ever imposed on a corporate executive in a criminal (...)

The Romanian Competition Authority recommends that retailers affected by COVID-19 can negotiate their rental agreements as a group through intermediaries to avoid breaking competition law in the process Free
Romanian Competition Council (Bucharest)
The Competition Council Makes Recommendations in the Context of Reopening the Shopping Centres* The Competition Council recommends those companies that have rented commercial spaces in shopping centres to independently negotiate their contractual conditions with the owners/administrators of (...)

The UK Competition Authority accepts disqualification of two estate agent directors for their roles in price fixing cartel (Stephen Jones / Neil Mackenzie)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
Estate agent directors disqualified for roles in illegal cartel* Stephen Jones and Neil Mackenzie were directors at estate agents Richard Worth and Michael Hardy, respectively, from September 2008 to May 2015. During this time, their firms took part in a cartel with 2 other local estate agents (...)

The Swedish Competition Authority requires municipal companies to comply with the Swedish Transparency Act (Stockholm Avfall / Stockholm Vatten)
Swedish Competition Authority (Stockholm)
Municipal companies are required to comply with the Swedish Transparency Act* Stockholm Avfall AB and Stockholm Vatten AB, two municipal companies, will, as of fiscal year 2020, maintain so-called transparent and separate accounts in accordance with the Swedish Transparency Act. This is the (...)

The Cypriot Competition Authority initiates proceedings against national pharmaceutical association for prima facie infringements of national and EU competition laws regarding fixing of prices and other trade conditions (Cyprus Pharmaceutical Association)
Commission for the Protection of Competition of the Republic of Cyprus (Nicosia)
The Commission for the Protection of Competition announces the notification of a Statement of Objections to the Cyprus Pharmaceutical Association regarding prima facie infringements of Section 3(1)(a) of the Protection of Competition Laws of 2008 and 2014 and Article 101(1) of the Treaty for (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority accepts commitments from the Association of Public Brokers to correct possible anticompetitive conducts
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE accepts commitments from the Association of Public Brokers to correct possible anticompetitive conducts* Relative monopolistic practices allegedly consisting in discriminatory treatment or establishing advantages in favour of certain agents were investigated in the market for the (...)

The Australian Competition Authority proposes to allow insurance companies and brokers to continue cooperation on COVID-19 temporary relief measures for certain small businesses Free
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
Insurers to be authorised to continue relief measures for small businesses* The ACCC is proposing to allow insurance companies and brokers to continue coordination and implementation of temporary COVID-19 relief measures for certain small businesses. The authorisation will apply to Suncorp, (...)

The OECD holds a roundtable on the criminalisation of cartels and bid-rigging conspiracies
OECD - Competition Division (Paris)
Sanctions against cartels vary greatly across jurisdictions, from monetary fines against firms and other legal persons, to criminal sanctions (including custodial sentences) against individuals. In the last years, an increased adoption of criminal enforcement regimes has been observed across (...)

The New Zealand Competition Authority fines a pharmacy $344,000 and its director $50,000 for price fixing (Prices Pharmacy 2011 / Stuart Hebberd)
New Zealand Commerce Commission
Nelson pharmacy fined $344,000 and director $50,000 for price-fixing* The Wellington High Court has ordered Prices Pharmacy 2011 Limited and a director of the company, Stuart Hebberd, to pay fines of $344,000 and $50,000 respectively, after they admitted engaging in price-fixing in breach of (...)

The Indian Competition Authority finds four automotive and industrial bearing companies to have engaged in price-fixing and directs them to cease and desist from their collusive behaviour (Schaeffler / SKF / NEI / Tata)
Trilegal (Mumbai)
,
Trilegal (Mumbai)
,
Trilegal (Mumbai)
The Competition Commission of India (CCI) recently found National Engineering Industries Ltd. (NEI), Schaeffler India Ltd. (Schaeffler), SKF India Ltd. (SKF) and Tata Steel Ltd., Bearing Division (Tata) (collectively, OPs) to have collusively fixed the prices of automotive and industrial (...)

The Brazilian Competition Authority authorises competitor collaboration to assist the recovery of small retailers of beverages, food and personal and domestic care products against the economic effects of COVID-19 (Movimento Nós) Free
Caminati Bueno Advogados (São Paulo)
,
Caminati Bueno Advogados (São Paulo)
,
Caminati Bueno Advogados (São Paulo)
In an Extraordinary Judgment Session held on May 28th, the Tribunal of the Brazilian Antitrust Authority (Cade) ratified a decision of its General Superintendence and authorized a collaboration among a group of companies (including competitors) - Ambev, BRF, Coca-Cola, Mondelez, Nestlé and (...)

The Brazilian Competition Authority authorises temporary collaboration due to COVID-19 among competitors distributing consumer goods such as beverages, food, personal and domestic care products to small and medium retailers (Movimento Nós) Free
Brazilian Administrative Council for Economic Defense (CADE) (Brasilia)
Cade authorizes collaboration among Ambev, BRF, Coca-Cola, Mondelez, Nestlé and Pepsico due to the new coronavirus crisis* Exceptional measure aims to minimize the effects of the crisis due to the Covid-19 pandemic The Administrative Council for Economic Defense (Cade) recently decided to (...)

The Irish Competition Authority concludes examination of beef industry complaints without going into full investigation due to lack of evidence to prove complainants’ claims
Irish Competition Authority (Dublin)
CCPC Concludes Examination of Beef Industry Complaints* The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) has today written to over 200 individuals, including the Independent Farmers of Ireland, the Beef Plan Movement, and the Irish Farmers Association, regarding the outcome of an (...)

The Japanese FTC approves commitment plan submitted by international contact lenses company to alleviate concerns of restrictive trading practices (Cooper Vision Japan)
Japan Fair Trade Commission (Tokyo)
Approval of the Commitment Plan submitted by Cooper Vision Japan, Inc.* In response to the Notice of Commitment Procedures which the Japan Fair Trade Commission (hereinafter referred to as “JFTC”) issued to Cooper Vision Japan, Inc. (hereinafter referred to as “Cooper Vision Japan”) on March 13, (...)

The UK Competition Authority secures binding competition disqualification undertakings by a director involved in two separate anticompetitive arrangements relating to the supply of pharmaceuticals (Amit Patel / Auden McKenzie / Amilco)
Bird & Bird (London)
,
Bird & Bird (London)
On 4 June 2020, the Competition Markets Authority (“CMA”) announced that it had secured binding competition disqualification undertakings by Mr Amit Patel, not to act as a director of any UK company for five years from 13 July 2020, in consequence of his involvement in two separate (...)

The EU Court of Justice Advocate General Kokott proposes to uphold the fine of almost €94 million imposed on a pharmaceutical group in the context of agreements intended to delay the marketing of generic versions of its antidepressant medicinal product citalopram (Lundbeck)
European Court of Justice (Luxembourg)
Advocate General Kokott proposes that the Court of Justice should uphold the fine of almost €94 million imposed on the Lundbeck pharmaceutical group in the context of agreements intended to delay the marketing of generic versions of its antidepressant medicinal product citalopram* The Advocate (...)

The UK Competition Authority secures disqualification of pharmaceutical company director for 5 years for breaching competition law (Amit Patel / Auden McKenzie / Amilco)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
Pharma company director disqualified for competition law breaches* The CMA has secured the disqualification of pharmaceutical company director Amit Patel after he admitted his role in arrangements that broke competition law. Amit Patel has signed undertakings that ban him from holding a (...)

The Paris Court of Appeal upholds dismissal of French car repairers’ complaints against a car manufacturer’s alleged discrimination in determining membership of its authorised repair network (Huyndai)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 4 June 2020, the Competition Chamber of the Paris Court of Appeal (the “Court”) handed down a judgment dismissing the appeal filed by three car repairers (the “Claimants”) against a decision of the French Competition Authority (the “FCA”) to reject their complaint against Hyundai Motor France (...)

The Swedish Competition Authority fines a municipality-owned power company for illegal direct award of a contract and rejects its reason of "extreme urgency"(Skellefteå Kraft Elnät)
Swedish Competition Authority (Stockholm)
Skellefteå Kraft was not allowed to give a direct award of contract due to extreme urgency* Skellefteå Kraft Elnät AB was in breach of procurement rules when it purchased materials for Vitberget, Bergsbyn, and Rönnskär without prior advertisement. The Swedish Competition Authority believes that (...)

The Lithuanian Supreme Administrative Court upholds the decision finding construction companies guilty of bid rigging in public procurement (Panevėžio statybos trestas / Active Construction Management / Irdaiva)
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
Supreme Administrative Court of Lithuania: Construction Companies Restricted Competition in Public Procurement Through Joint Bidding* The Supreme Administrative Court of Lithuania (Court) rejected the appeals by the construction company Panevėžio statybos trestas (PST) and company Active (...)

The US DoJ files first charges in an ongoing investigation into price-fixing by major broiler chicken producers (Jayson Jeffrey Penn / Mikell Reeve Fries / Scott James Brady / Roger Born Austin)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Senior Executives at Major Chicken Producers Indicted on Antitrust Charges* First Charges Filed in Ongoing Investigation into Fixing Prices of Broiler Chickens A federal grand jury in the U.S. District Court in Denver, Colorado, returned an indictment against four executives for their role in (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority opens a public consultation on draft modifications to the guidelines for the exchange of information between economic agents
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
Public Consultation on the Draft Modifications to the Guidelines for the Exchange of Information Between Economic Agents* Pursuant to articles 28, paragraphs 14th and 20th, section VI, of the Political Constitution of the United Mexican States; articles 12, section XXII, last paragraph, (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority receives over 500 complaints and inquiries in the mailbox set up specifically during the COVID-19 pandemic Free
Spanish Competition Authority (Madrid)
The CNMC receives over 500 complaints and inquiries through the mailbox set up during the Covid-19 crisis* The CNMC receives over 500 complaints and inquiries through the mailbox set up during the Covid-19 crisis The financial sector (45%) and the health products and food sector (30%) (...)

The Italian Competition Authority approves a distribution scheme allowing disposable surgical masks to be sold in pharmacies and health retail outlets as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic Free
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 1 June 2020, the Italian competition authority (“L’Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato”) authorised a scheme that would allow disposable surgical masks to be distributed and sold in pharmacies and health product retail outlets (see, attached press release). It did so at the request (...)

The Italian Competition Authority allows cooperation among competing pharmacies in purchasing and selling surgical masks, and common moratorium scheme for consumer credit among competing financial services providers, both as special measures allowed due to COVID-19 Free
Italian Competition Authority (Rome)
ICA: competitive compatibility verified of the cooperation agreements between businesses for the distribution of masks and the moratorium scheme for consumer credit prepared by Assofin* The Authority has applied for the first time the Communication, approved last April, on cooperation (...)

The Latvian Competition Authority develops a self-assessment tool for entrepreneurs for mitigation of cartel risks
Konkurences padome (Riga)
The CC develops a self-assessment tool for entrepreneurs for mitigation of cartel risks* The Competition Council of Latvia (the CC) has prepared a self-assessment tool for entrepreneurs, so that they could verify in an easy manner, whether they have not engaged in a prohibited agreement with (...)

The German Government adopts an amendment to act against restraints of competition to mitigate the consequences of COVID-19 pandemic on competition law enforcement Free
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 28 May 2020, an amendment to the Act against Restraints of Competition which aims at mitigating the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic on competition law enforcement was published in the Federal Gazette. The amendment adjusts the law with regard to two specific provisions where companies (...)

The Indian Company Law Appellate Tribunal clarifies the emerging jurisprudence on hub-and-spoke cartel and standing requirements in a case concerning two ride-hailing platforms in the automobile services market for fixing cab fares through their apps (Uber / Ola)
Khaitan (New Delhi)
,
Khaitan (New Delhi)
In a relief to the multinational giant, Uber, and home-grown Ola (collectively, Ride-hailing Platforms), the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) – India’s appeal tribunal for competition matters – dismissed an appeal filed by Samir Agrawal (Informant). In doing so, the NCLAT has upheld (...)

The Swedish Competition Authority fines a municipality for illegal direct award of a contract for a golf course (Kalix Municipality)
Swedish Competition Authority (Stockholm)
Kalix has performed an illegal direct award of the operation of a golf course* Kalix Municipality has performed an illegal direct award of the operation of a golf course. This is the conclusion of the Swedish Competition Authority, which is now presenting a claim for the municipality to be (...)

The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit rules against a sports association’s policy of limiting the compensation paid to student-athletes and affirms limited injunctions (National Collegiate Athletic Association)
Hogan Lovells (Washington)
,
Hogan Lovells (Washington)
,
Hogan Lovells (Washington)
On 18 May 2020 the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled against the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) in an antitrust case challenging the association’s policy of limiting the compensation paid to student-athletes. The decision is the latest concerning the NCAA’s (...)

The Slovakian Council of the Antimonopoly Office imposes fines totalling €6,7 million for a cartel agreement between dealers of motor vehicles (Volkswagen)
Bird & Bird (Bratislava)
,
Bird & Bird (Prague)
On 15 May 2020 the Council of the Antimonopoly Office of the Slovak Republic ("CAOS") changed the first-instance decision of the Antimonopoly Office of the Slovak Republic ("AOS") dated 3 February 2020 and imposed fines totalling of EUR 6,7 million for a cartel agreements between dealers of (...)

The EU Court of Justice partially quashes the General Court’s decision and reduces the fines on eleven producers of high voltage power cables for their participation in a global market-sharing cartel (Verwaltungs)
Ashurst (Brussels)
,
Ashurst (Brussels)
,
Ashurst (Brussels)
On 14 May 2020, the European Court of Justice (the "ECJ") partially quashed the General Court’s (the "GC") judgment upholding the European Commission’s ("Commission") power cables cartel decision with respect to NKT and its wholly owned subsidiary NKT Verwaltungs (together "NKT" or the (...)

The Ontario Court of Justice certifies a $1.0 billion foreign exchange price fixing class action in the banking sector (Mancinelli / Royal Bank of Canada)
Affleck Greene McMurtry (Toronto)
Superior Court Certifies $1.0 Billion Foreign Exchange Price Fixing Class Action* In his decision released earlier this Spring, Ontario Superior Court Justice Paul Perell certified a class action in Mancinelli v. Royal Bank of Canada claiming $1.0 Billion in damages against several large (...)

The UK Competition Tribunal publishes a summary of an application to commence collective proceedings for losses arising from a settlement decision finding infringements of article 101 TFEU in the automobile market (Mark McLaren)
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (London)
,
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Brussels)
,
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (London)
On 1 April 2020, the CAT published a summary of an application to commence collective proceedings under section 47B of the Competition Act 1998. The application was filed by Mark McLaren Class Representative Limited, a special purpose vehicle, alleging losses arising from the European (...)

The German Competition Authority finalises fines totalling €110 million on eleven providers of technical building services for collusion in the award of major contracts (Caverion / Elektrotherm / Landshut / Engie / Cologne / Ferrostaal Air Technolgy / Saarwellingen / Stuttgart...)
Bird & Bird (Düsseldorf)
,
Bird & Bird (Düsseldorf)
In December 2019 the Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) imposed fines totalling EUR 110 million on eleven providers of technical building services for collusion in the award of major contracts. The proceedings were initiated in November 2014 following a leniency application. The leniency application (...)

The French Competition Authority fines a big tech and its wholesalers a record €1,24 billion for their series of vertical restrictions within the distribution network and their abuse of economic dependence (Apple / Tech Data / Ingram Micro)
AD LEGAL (Paris)
In a decision of March 16, 2020, the French Competition Authority (Autorité de la concurrence, hereinafter “FCA”) imposed a €1,1 billion fine on the Apple group (“Apple”) for (i) engaging in a series of vertical restrictions of competition within its distribution network and (ii) abusing the economic (...)

The Belgian Competition Authority imposes interim measures on a billiards game association following a complaint raised on its anticompetitive rules (Belgian Bumper Pool Association)
University of Leiden - Europa Institute
In a decision of 24 January 2020, the Competition College of the Belgian Competition Authority imposed an interim measure on the Belgian Bumper Pool Association (Belgian Golf Billiards League, BGB) concerning the balls that may be played with in competitions and matches organised by the BGB or (...)

Unilateral Practices

The US FTC charges a $10 Million fine to a company that illegally maintained a monopoly over the Opioid Addiction Treatment Suboxone (Indivior) New
US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) (Washington)
Indivior, Inc. to Pay $10 Million to Consumers, Settling FTC Charges that the Company Illegally Maintained a Monopoly over the Opioid Addiction Treatment Suboxone* FTC alleges company used anticompetitive tactics to impede competition from lower-cost generics Indivior, Inc. has agreed to pay (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority investigates on monopolistic practices consisting in establishing exclusivity conditions of sale or purchase in the market for production, distribution and commercialization of medical oxygen New
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE investigates possible relative monopolistic practices in the market for production, distribution and commercialization of medical oxygen in the Mexican territory* This investigation must not be understood as a prejudgment but rather as an action of the authority to verify compliance with (...)

The UK Competition Authority fines a musical manufacturing company for resale price maintenance (Roland) New
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
Roland fined £4 million for illegally preventing online price discounts* Lessons from the CMA’s investigation into Roland’s use of illegal resale price maintenance (RPM). Background When online resellers have the freedom to price items independently this leads to healthy competition – rivals (...)

The Croatian Competition Authority fines supermarket chain for imposing unfair trading practices in the business-to-business food supply chain (Kaufland Hrvatska)
Croatian Competition Agency (Zagreb)
Kaufland Hrvatska fined 1.1 million Kuna for imposing unfair trading practices* The Croatian Competition Agency (CCA) fined Kaufland Hrvatska k.d. (Kaufland) 1.1 million Kuna for a serious breach of the provisions of the Act on the prohibition of unfair trading practices in the (...)

The EU Commission invites comments on pharmaceutical company’s proposed commitment to reduce price by 73% for six off-patent cancer medicines to remove the Commission’s excessive pricing concerns (Aspen)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission seeks feedback on commitments offered by Aspen to reduce prices for six off-patent cancer medicines by 73% to address Commission’s concerns over excessive pricing* The European Commission invites comments from all interested parties on commitments offered by Aspen to (...)

The EU Commission starts a market test on the proposed commitments offered by a pharmaceutical company to address the Commission’s concerns over excessive pricing for a range of off-patent cancer medicines (Aspen) New
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
Today, the European Commission (the Commission) started a market test inviting comments from interested parties on commitments offered by Aspen Pharmacare Holdings (Aspen) to address the Commission’s concerns over excessive pricing for a range of off-patent cancer medicines (see, attached (...)

The South African Competition Tribunal publishes its written reasons to penalize a pharmaceutical chain for excessive pricing (Dis-Chem) Free
Nortons (Sandton)
,
Nortons (Sandton)
South Africa’s Second Price Gouging Case: Dis-Chem Penalised For Excessive Pricing re Face Masks* On 14 July 2020, the South African Competition Tribunal published its written reasons in relation to its decision to penalize Dis-Chem (a large pharmaceutical chain in South Africa) for (...)

The German Federal Court of Justice confirms an abuse of dominance over data collection by an online platform without the user’s explicit consent (Facebook) New
Bird & Bird (Düsseldorf)
,
Bird & Bird (Düsseldorf)
The Federal Court of Justice (FCJ) rejected Facebook’s application for suspensive effect in connection to its appeal to the Higher Regional Court of Düsseldorf against the decision of the Federal Cartel Office (FCO) prohibiting Facebook from collecting and processing Facebook users’ data generated (...)

The Japanese FTC issues a cease and desist order against airplane fuel provider for requesting its customers not to be refueled by its competitor (Mainami Aviation Services)
Japan Fair Trade Commission (Tokyo)
The JFTC Issued a Cease and Desist Order against Mainami Aviation Services Co., Ltd* Today, the Japan Fair Trade Commission (JFTC) issued a cease and desist order against Mainami Aviation Services Co., Ltd (Hereinafter “Mainami Aviation Services”). In this case, Mainami Aviation Services has (...)

The EU Commission proposes a new competition toolbox targeting structural risks to competition and markets characterised by a structural lack of competition New
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
In the context of the intense debate about the role of competition policy in an increasingly digital and globalised economy, the European Commission (the “Commission”) has concluded that ensuring the fair functioning of markets may require a more holistic and comprehensive toolbox than that (...)

The German Federal Court of Justice issues a judgment in a case involving SEP licensing negotiations on FRAND terms between two companies active in the mobile telecommunication market (Sisvel / Haier) New
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 5 May 2020, the German Federal Court of Justice (Bundesgerichtshof - the “FCJ”) delivered a judgment in a case pitting Sisvel against Haier which deals with the licensing of Standard Essential Patents (“SEP”) on terms that are fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (“FRAND”). This is the first (...)

The German Federal Court of Justice rules on licensing between two companies active in the mobile telecommunication market regarding SEP licensing negotiations on FRAND terms (Sisvel / Haier) New
McDermott Will & Emery (Düsseldorf)
,
McDermott Will & Emery (Düsseldorf)
The German Federal Court of Justice (FCJ) has issued its decision in a landmark case regarding standard essential patents (SEPs) and fair, reasonable and nondiscriminatory (FRAND) licensing of SEPs. The judgment, dated 5 May 2020, was handed down in litigation between the Sisvel patent pool and (...)

The Italian Court of Cassation rules on the limitation period of antitrust damages claims in two judgements in the telecommunications (Uno Communications / Telecom Italia / Vodafone Italia) New
Rucellai & Raffaelli (Milan)
1.- Introduction By judgements issued on the 27th of February, 2020, No. 5381, and on the 3rd of April 2020, No. 7677, the Italian Court of Cassation (Corte di Cassazione) ruled that the antitrust damages claims brought by Uno Communications S.p.A. against Vodafone Italia S.p.A. and Telecom (...)

The UK Competition Authority investigates four pharmacies and convenience stores for excessive and unfair pricing of hand sanitiser products to consumers during the COVID-19 pandemic New Free
Bird & Bird (London)
,
Bird & Bird (London)
The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is investigating four pharmacies and convenience stores for suspected breaches of competition law. The investigations, under Chapter II of the Competition Act 1998 (CA 98), relate to suspected charging of excessive and unfair prices for hand sanitiser (...)

The UK Competition Authority announces that it has been monitoring reports of changes to sales and pricing practices during the COVID-19 outbreak and will assess whether it should advise Government to consider taking direct action to regulate prices New Free
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
COVID-19: sales and pricing practices during Coronavirus outbreak* The CMA has been monitoring reports of changes to sales and pricing practices during the coronavirus outbreak. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) wants to ensure that traders do not exploit the current situation to (...)

The EU General Court hears an appeal for abuse of dominance in online comparison shopping services (Google Shopping) New
Catholic University of Louvain
Background On 27 June 2017, the European Commission imposed a record fine of 2.42 billion euros to Google for abuse of dominant position under Article 102 TFEU consisting in self-favouring its own Comparison Shopping Service (“CSS”) by displaying it more prominently and under enriched features (...)

The EU Court of Justice clarifies when patent settlement agreements restricting a generic pharmaceutical company’s ability to enter the market, infringe EU antitrust rules (Generics UK / GlaxoSmithKline) New
Bird & Bird (Brussels)
,
Bird & Bird (Brussels)
Article summary: Settlement Agreements Can Be Anti-Competitive Only If The Involved Companies Are (At Least) Potential Competitors. A Careful Examination Must Determine Whether A Generic Manufacturer Would Have Entered Into The Market Without A "Pay Per Delay" Agreement. The Classification Of (...)

The Danish Competition Authority finds the largest distributor of print circulars guilty of abuse of dominance for tying its print circulars to increasing its market share in digital circulars (FK Distribution)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
FK Distribution has abused its dominant position* The Danish Competition Council has decided that the largest distributor of print circulars, FK Distribution, has abused its dominant position. The Council has found that the distributor has had a conduct whereby it could harm competitors on the (...)

The UK Competition Authority fines a musical instrument firm for resale price maintenance (Roland / Korg)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
Musical instrument firms to pay millions after breaking competition law* The CMA has fined 2 musical instrument makers a total of £5.5 million, in 2 separate cases, for breaking competition law by restricting online discounting of musical instruments. The fines on the companies, Roland and (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority extends its investigation into abuse of dominance by manufacturer of orphan drug CDCA (Leadiant)
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (The Hague)
ACM extends its investigation into orphan drug CDCA-Leadiant* The Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) extends its investigation into the orphan drug CDCA manufactured by Leadiant. The investigation focuses on the question whether the manufacturer abuses a dominant position in (...)

The German Federal Court of Justice preliminarily confirms that an online platform abused its dominant position on the German market of social networks (Facebook)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 23 June 2020, the German Federal Court of Justice (“FCJ”), in summary proceedings, preliminarily confirmed the finding of the Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) that Facebook had abused its dominant position. It overturned the decision of the Higher Regional Court of Düsseldorf that had suspended the (...)

The German Federal Court of Justice overturns the Düsseldorf Court of Appeals’ interim decision and finds an online social media platform to have abused its power in collecting data from different sources (Facebook)
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Cologne)
,
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Cologne)
,
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Cologne)
On June 23, 2020, the Federal Court of Justice (“FCJ”) overturned the Düsseldorf Court of Appeals’ (“DCA”) interim decision and rejected Facebook Inc.’s (“Facebook”) request to suspend the enforceability of the Federal Cartel Office’s (“FCO”) prohibition decision. The FCJ disagreed with the FCO’s (...)

The German Federal Court of Justice provisionally confirms allegation of a social media company abusing dominant position (Facebook)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Federal Court of Justice provisionally confirms allegation of Facebook abusing dominant position* Facebook uses terms of service that also allow for the processing and use of user data that are collected online outside the Facebook platform. The Bundeskartellamt prohibited Facebook from (...)

The UK Competition Authority opens investigations against four pharmacies and convenience stores for suspected breaches of antitrust rules by charging excessive and unfair prices for hand sanitiser products during the COVID-19 outbreak Free
Morgan Lewis (London)
,
Morgan Lewis (London)
,
Morgan Lewis (London)
The UK Competition and Markets Authority on June 19 announced that it had opened investigations against four pharmacies and convenience stores in relation to suspected breaches of antitrust rules by charging excessive and unfair prices for hand sanitiser products during the coronavirus (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Authority fines retailer for unfair commercial practices to food and drink suppliers (Palink)
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
Retailer Palink Receives Fine for Unfair Commercial Practices to Food and Drink Suppliers* The Lithuanian competition authority Konkurencijos taryba found that UAB Palink, one of the major retail companies in Lithuania, infringed the Law on the Prohibition of Unfair Practices of Retailers (...)

The Australian Competition Authority proposes not to allow a camping industry association’s loyalty program due to its conditions amounting to exclusive dealing (Caravanning Queensland)
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
Caravanning Queensland’s proposed ‘loyalty program’ raises competition concerns* The ACCC proposes not to allow plans by Caravan Trade and Industries Association of Queensland (Caravanning Queensland) to offer a ‘loyalty program’ to its members. Under the program, Caravanning Queensland would (...)

The EU Commission opens investigations into tech company’s mobile app store rules for developers (Apple App Store)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission opens investigations into Apple’s App Store rules* The European Commission has opened formal antitrust investigations to assess whether Apple’s rules for app developers on the distribution of apps via the App Store violate EU competition rules. The investigations concern in (...)

The EU Commission opens investigation into tech company’s mobile payment and digital wallet service (Apple Pay)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission opens investigation into Apple practices regarding Apple Pay* The European Commission has opened a formal antitrust investigation to assess whether Apple’s conduct in connection with Apple Pay violates EU competition rules. The investigation concerns Apple’s terms, (...)

The Australian Competition Authority rejects a company’s proposal to set minimum resale prices for power tools, accessories, and attachments (Stanley Black & Decker)
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
Proposal to set minimum advertised prices for Dewalt power tools rejected* The ACCC has issued a final notice rejecting a proposal by Stanley Black & Decker to set a minimum advertised price for Dewalt brand power tools, accessories and attachments. The ACCC has assessed Stanley Black (...)

The Italian Competition Authority investigates whether a current gas distribution concessionaire abused dominance to delay competitive bidding for the next concession (Italgas Reti)
Italian Competition Authority (Rome)
ICA: investigation launched into Italgas to verify abusive practices in the tender for the gas distribution service in some municipalities in the province of Venice* The Authority has decided to launch an investigation to verify whether Italgas Reti Spa, the current operator under extension of (...)

The EU Commission consults stakeholders on a possible new competition tool that would allow addressing structural competition problems, such as tipping markets, in a timely and effective manner
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission consults stakeholders on a possible new competition tool* The European Commission has published today an inception impact assessment as well as an open public consultation inviting comments on exploring the need for a possible new competition tool that would allow (...)

The Japanese FTC closes investigation into exclusionary conduct by gas company due to lack of evidence (Osaka Gas)
Japan Fair Trade Commission (Tokyo)
Closing the investigation on the suspected violation of the Antimonopoly Act by Osaka Gas Co., Ltd.* The Japan Fair Trade Commission (hereinafter “JFTC”) has investigated Osaka Gas Co., Ltd. (hereinafter “Osaka Gas”), in accordance with the provisions of the Antimonopoly Act. Osaka Gas has been (...)

The Belgian Government passes a law prohibiting companies from abusing non-dominant positions vis-à-vis companies that are economically dependent on them
Hogan Lovells (Brussels)
,
Hogan Lovells (Brussels)
,
Hogan Lovells (Brussels)
A new form of competition law infringement will be enforceable in Belgium* (in addition to the prohibitions on anti-competitive agreements and abuses of a dominant position). The new Article IV.2/1 of the Belgian Competition Act (CA) will prohibit companies from abusing a non-dominant position (...)

The Indian Competition Appellate Tribunal interprets strictly ’sufficient cause’ in an appellate framework for Competition matters to tackle forum shopping practices (MAJ. PANKAJ RAI / NITT)
Gujarat National Law University (Gandhinagar)
,
Gujarat National Law University (Gandhinagar)
The National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) in New Delhi, India’s appellate tribunal for competition matters has given a decisive ruling for appeals of orders of the Competition Commission of India (CCI). In Maj. Pankaj Rai v Secretary, Competition Commission of India decided in May, (...)

The Amsterdam Court of Appeal dismisses a claim that a real estate agent association’s self-preferencing strategy is abusive because the competitive position remained unaffected (VBO / NVM / Funda)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 26 May 2020, the Amsterdam Court of Appeal (the “Court”) handed down its judgment in the dispute between the real estate agent association VBO (“VBO”) and Funda Real Estate (“Funda”) and the Dutch Association of Real Estate Agents (“NVM”). The Court upheld the judgment of the District Court finding (...)

The Amsterdam Court of Appeal rules that an online real estate platform has not abused its dominance by inter alia self-preferencing the ranking of online advertisements (VBO / NVM / Funda)
Bird & Bird (Amsterdam)
,
Bird & Bird (Amsterdam)
,
Bird & Bird (The Hague)
On 26 May 2020, the Amsterdam Court of Appeal (“Court”) delivered its judgment in a dispute between the real estate association VBO Makelaars (“VBO”) versus the Dutch Association of Real Estate Agents (“NVM”) over the online real estate platform of Funda Real Estate (“Funda”). The Court assumed that (...)

The Italian Supreme Administrative Court rejects an appeal lodged by a multinational drug company against a previous decision ascertaining it as having abused its dominant position by imposing unfair prices for drugs (Aspen)
Bird & Bird (Rome)
,
Bird & Bird (Rome)
On 13 March, the Italian Supreme Administrative Court ("Consiglio di Stato") rejected the appeal lodged by the multinational Aspen Group against the decision of the Regional Administrative Court of Lazio (“TAR”), which fully upheld the decision adopted by the Italian Competition Authority (“ICA”) (...)

Mergers

The German Competition Authority clears merger of hospitals in Flensburg (St. Franziskus-Hospital / Diakonissenkrankenhaus) New
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt clears merger of hospitals in Flensburg* The Bundeskartellamt has cleared the planned concentration of St. Franziskus-Hospital operated by the Malteser group in Flensburg and the somatic division of Diakonissenkrankenhaus, Flensburg, under joint management. Both facilities are (...)

The EU Commission opens in-depth investigation into the proposed acquisition of wearable tech devices by Big Tech company (Fitbit / Google) New
DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission opens in-depth investigation into the proposed acquisition of Fitbit by Google* The European Commission has opened an in-depth investigation to assess the proposed acquisition of Fitbit by Google under the EU Merger Regulation. The Commission is concerned that the proposed (...)

The UK Competition Authority clears a Big Tech company’s 16% investment in online food delivery company (Amazon / Deliveroo) New
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
CMA clears Amazon’s 16% investment in Deliveroo* Following an in-depth investigation, the CMA has today cleared Amazon’s 16% investment in Deliveroo after finding that it will not substantially lessen competition. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) completed an initial ‘Phase 1’ (...)

The EU Commission clears merger of global rail transportation companies subject to conditions (Alstom / Bombardier) New
DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission clears Alstom’s acquisition of Bombardier, subject to conditions* The European Commission has approved, under the EU Merger Regulation, the acquisition of Bombardier Transportation by Alstom. The approval is conditional on full compliance with a commitments package offered (...)

The US DoJ clears merger of major financial trading platform and major financial data provider (London Stock Exchange Group / Refinitiv) New
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Statement of the Department of Justice Antitrust Division on the Closing of Its Investigation of London Stock Exchange Group and Refinitiv* Assistant Attorney General Makan Delrahim of the Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice issued the following statement today in connection (...)

The German Competition Authority clears a joint venture between two German newspapers in the printed advertisement sector but examines the cooperation between these two firms (Süddeutsche Zeitung / Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung) New
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Joint marketing of advertising space - Süddeutsche Zeitung and Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung can establish a joint venture, but the examination of the cooperation under antitrust law is still ongoing* After examining the project under merger control law the Bundeskartellamt has cleared the (...)

The New Zealand Competition Authority receives a merger clearance application for egg production and wholesale supply operations (Heyden Farms / Henergy Cage-Free / Rasmusens Poultry Farms) New
New Zealand Commerce Commission
Heyden Farms, Henergy Cage-Free, Rasmusens Poultry Farms seek clearance to merge egg production operations* The Commerce Commission has received a clearance application from Heyden Farms Limited, Henergy Cage-Free Limited and Rasmusens Poultry Farms Limited seeking clearance to merge their (...)

The Cypriot Competition Authority receives a notification of concentration in the dairy sector (DeLaval / Avon Rubber) New
Commission for the Protection of Competition of the Republic of Cyprus (Nicosia)
Notification of a concentration concerning the acquisition by DeLaval Holding BV of the share capital of subsidiaries of Avon Rubber p.l.c., which constitute its dairy business* The Service of the Commission for the Protection of Competition has received a notification of a concentration by (...)

The New Zealand Competition Authority opens investigation into the merger of two refrigeration equipments distributors (Beijer / Heatcraft New Zealand) New
New Zealand Commerce Commission
Investigation opened into Beijer’s acquisition of Heatcraft NZ and acquisition of rights to apply for HFC import permits* The Commerce Commission has opened an investigation into Beijer Ref AB’s 2018 acquisition of Heatcraft New Zealand Limited, and its 2019 acquisition (via its subsidiary (...)

The French Competition Authority clears, subject to conditions, the merger of two companies in the chemical pathology sector (Dyomedea-Neolab / Biogroup) New
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
Chemical pathology laboratories: the Autorité clears, subject to conditions, the take-over of Dyomedea-Neolab Group by Biogroup Group* Parties to the transaction Biogroup Group is active in the chemical pathology sector, with laboratories located at over 550 sites across the country. (...)

The French Competition Authority clears an acquisition in the alcohol-free soft drink production and bottling markets (Refresh / Fruité company) New
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence clears the sole control acquisition of the assets of the Fruité company and its subsidiaries Unisource and Bric Fruit by Refresco (Saint Alban and Sun)* On 10 June 2020, Refresco France notified the Autorité de la concurrence of its plan to acquire sole control of (...)

The Romanian Competition Authority authorizes the set up of a joint-venture in the agricultural sector (Al Dahra Agriculture / OCP) New
Romanian Competition Council (Bucharest)
The Competition Council authorized the set up of a joint venture company by Al Dahra Agriculture LLC, United Arab Emirates and OCP s.a. Morocco* The Competition Council authorized the set up of a joint venture company by Al Dahra Agriculture LLC, United Arab Emirates and OCP S.A., Morocco. (...)

The French Competition Authority publishes its revised guidelines regarding merger control New
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence publishes its new guidelines regarding merger control* Since autumn 2017, the Autorité has been deeply involved in the modernisation and simplification of merger control. On 20 April 2019, a decree simplifying the procedure for notifying a merger to the Autorité (...)

The Israel Competition Authority approves under remedies the merger of two building material companies (Çimsa / Cemex) New
Israel Antitrust Authority (IAA)
The Competition Commissioner has Approved under Remedies the International Merger between Çimsa and Cemex, for the Acquisition of a White Cement Factory in Spain* Under the remedies, Cemex’s operations in Israel will not be sold to Çimsa, and Cemex will be required to start selling white cement (...)

The Irish Competition Authority carries out a phase 2 investigation in the merger of two IT service management companies (Link / Pepper) New
Irish Competition Authority (Dublin)
CCPC to carry out a phase 2 investigation of Link Group/Pepper merger* The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) has decided to carry out a full (Phase 2) investigation into the proposed acquisition by Link Group Administration Limited (“Link”) of sole control of Pepper Ireland (...)

The UK Government lowers the notification thresholds of merger control and issues guidance on these changes New
Ashurst (London)
,
Ashurst (London)
,
Ashurst (London)
Lower notification thresholds under UK merger control for certain additional sectors impacting national security entered into force on 21 July. The lower thresholds now cover transactions related to the development, production, supply or research of: artificial intelligence (new) cryptographic (...)

The UK Government lowers the notification thresholds of merger control relevant to the UK national security and issues new powers of investigations New
Morgan Lewis (London)
,
Morgan Lewis (London)
,
Morgan Lewis (London)
The UK government passed reforms on 21 July 2020 lowering the thresholds to intervene in mergers and acquisitions considered relevant to UK national security in the artificial intelligence, cryptographic authentication, and advanced materials sectors. Longer term the UK government is planning (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority imposes fine for failure to notify a concentration in the energy sector and authorises the transaction (BAS Corporation / ESZ KI / ESZ KII / EXI Solar)
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE sanctions BAS Projects Corporation, ESZ KI, ESZ KII, and EXI Solar for failing to notify a concentration and authorizes the transaction* Imposes fines totaling to 977 thousand Mexican pesos. Authorizes the concentration considering that the operation does not pose risks to the process (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority agrees to extend for 3 years the remedies agreed as part of the pay-TV merger authorisation in 2015 (Telefónica / DTS)
Spanish Competition Authority (Madrid)
The CNMC agrees to extend for three years the remedies agreed as part of the merger authorisation between Telefónica and DTS in 2015* All the remedies are maintained for the maximum period of three years, save for the one involving the purchase of exclusive broadcast rights in Spain for (...)

The French Competition Authority clears merger in the medical biology sector, subject to conditions (Laborizon / Biogroup)
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
Medical biology laboratories: the Autorité clears, subject to certain conditions, the acquisition of the Laborizon group by the Biogroup group* Parties to the transaction Biogroup is active in the medical biology sector, with laboratories distributed over more than 550 sites, throughout the (...)

The US FTC requires global suppliers of animal health products to divest assets in 3 product markets as a condition for merger clearance (Elanco / Bayer)
US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) (Washington)
FTC Requires Global Suppliers of Animal Health Products Elanco Animal Health, Inc. and Bayer Animal Health GmbH to Divest Assets in Three Product Markets, as a Condition of Merger* The Federal Trade Commission will require global suppliers of animal products, Elanco Animal Health, Inc. and (...)

The EU Commission clears merger of Polish integrated oil & gas companies active in many Central & Eastern European and Baltic countries, subject to conditions (Lotos / PKN Orlen)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission clears Lotos’ acquisition by PKN Orlen, subject to conditions* The European Commission has approved, under the EU Merger Regulation, the acquisition of Grupa Lotos by PKN Orlen. The approval is conditional on full compliance with a commitments package offered by PKN Orlen. (...)

The French Competition Authority clears without conditions acquisition of sole control in producer of metal parts for luxury companies by major luxury group (J3L / Hermès Group)
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence clears the acquisition of sole control of J3L by the Hermès group* The Hermès group notified the Autorité de la concurrence of its plan to acquire sole control of the J3L company. After examining the effects of the transaction, the Autorité has cleared it without (...)

The German Competition Authority clears merger of 2 transport companies providing transport of goods by inland waterway vessel with no conditions because the market is characterised by overcapacities (Rhenus / Deutsche Binnenreederei)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Rhenus can take over Deutsche Binnenreederei* The Bundeskartellamt has cleared the planned acquisition of Deutsche Binnenreederei AG, Berlin, by Rhenus SE & Co. KG, Holzwickede. The main business of Deutsche Binnenreederei is the transport of goods by inland waterway vessel, especially on (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority opens investigation into merger of tour operators (Corendon / Sunweb)
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (The Hague)
Acquisition of Corendon by Sunweb requires further investigation* A further investigation is needed into the effects that the acquisition of Dutch tour operator Corendon by rival operator Sunweb will have on competition. Sunweb therefore cannot yet acquire Corendon. That is what the (...)

The German Competition Authority opens in-depth investigation of merger between major food retailers (Kaufland / Real)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Second phase review initiated with regard to Kaufland’s acquisition of Real stores* The Bundeskartellamt has today initiated an in-depth examination (also referred to as a second phase review) in the context of Kaufland GmbH & Co. KG’s (Kaufland) planned acquisition of up to 101 Real stores (...)

The Australian Competition Authority clears animal health business merger subject to divestments (Bayer / Elanco)
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
Elanco’s acquisition of Bayer’s animal health business not opposed* The ACCC will not oppose Elanco’s acquisition of Bayer AG’s animal health business, after Elanco provided a court-enforceable undertaking to divest four animal parasite treatment brands. The ACCC had concerns about the effect of (...)

The Irish Competition Authority lets a merger between 2 laundry businesses serving healthcare providers go into effect after having found they fulfilled all required commitments (Berendsen / Kings Laundry)
Irish Competition Authority (Dublin)
Berendsen/Kings Laundry merger update* On 8 July 2019, the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) cleared, subject to a number of legally binding commitments, the proposed acquisition of sole control of Kings Laundry Limited (Kings Laundry) by Berendsen Ireland Limited (...)

The German Competition Authority clears merger of online dating platforms within merger of their holding companies (Parship / Elite Partner / Lovoo)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Parship and Elite Partner can acquire Lovoo* The Bundeskartellamt has cleared the planned acquisition of The Meet Group Inc., USA, by the ProSiebenSat.1 group. Since 2016 the portfolio of the ProSieben Sat.1 group has included the online dating platforms Parship and Elite Partner. The Meet (...)

The EU Commission unconditionally clears a merger between global suppliers of optical sensors and optical semiconductors (AMS / OSRAM)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission clears AMS’ acquisition of OSRAM* The European Commission has approved unconditionally, under the EU Merger Regulation, the proposed acquisition of OSRAM by AMS. The Commission concluded that the transaction would raise no competition concerns in the European Economic Area (...)

The US FTC fines retail fuel station operator and its affiliate for failing to divest 10 retail gas stations as required by earlier order (Alimentation Couche-Tard / CrossAmerica Partners)
US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) (Washington)
Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. and CrossAmerica Partners LP Agree to Pay $3.5 Million Civil Penalty to Settle FTC Allegations that they Violated 2018 Order* Retail fuel station and convenience store operator Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. (“ACT”) and its former affiliate, CrossAmerica Partners LP (...)

The US FTC imposes a $3.5 million civil penalty from a retail fuel station operator and its affiliate for violation of a settlement agreement requiring the divesture of 10 retail gas stations (Alimentation Couche-Tard / CrossAmeria) New
McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
,
McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently extracted a $3.5 million civil penalty from two companies involved in a gas station merger. The FTC asserts the companies violated their settlement agreement with the government, which required the divestment of 10 gas stations within 120 days from (...)

The US DoJ and FTC issue a revised version of the vertical merger guidelines New
Dechert (Washington)
,
Dechert (Washington)
,
Dechert (Washington)
5 Key Takeaways 1. The guidelines explain and clarify current agency practices and do not signify a policy shift at the agencies. 2. The guidelines recognize that vertical mergers often generate consumer benefits, creating a promising path for companies to secure antitrust clearance. 3. (...)

The US DoJ and FTC issue updated vertical merger guidelines New
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (New York)
,
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Washington DC)
,
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (New York)
Following their January publication of Draft Vertical Merger Guidelines (draft guidelines) for public comment, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) (collectively, the agencies) issued final Vertical Merger Guidelines (Guidelines) on June 30, 2020. This marks (...)

The Australian Competition Authority releases its statement of issues by expressing preliminary concerns over a proposed acquisition that would entrench an online platform’s dominant position in the supply of data-dependent health services and ad tech services (Google / Fitbit) New
Bird & Bird (Sydney)
,
Bird & Bird (Sydney)
On 18 June 2020, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) released its Statement of Issues in relation to Google LLC’s proposed acquisition of Fitbit, expressing its concerns that the acquisition may further entrench Google’s dominant position in the supply of data-dependent (...)

The Rotterdam District Court annuls a ministerial merger licence for the acquisition of rival post operators granted on general interest grounds outweighing the expected restrictive effects on competition (Sandd / PostNL) New
Bird & Bird (Amsterdam)
On 11 June 2020, the District Court of Rotterdam (‘District Court’) annulled the decision of the Minister of Economic Affairs & Climate (‘Minister’) to grant a licence for the acquisition of rival post operator Sandd by PostNL. This was the first time since the introduction of the Dutch (...)

The Danish Competition Authority conditionally clears an acquisition in the natural gas sector subject to the divestment of 107,000 consumers (SEAS-NVE / Ørsted) New
Bird & Bird (Copenhagen)
,
Bird & Bird (Copenhagen)
On 28 May 2020, the Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (DCCA) received a complete notification of SEAS-NVE A/S’ (SEAS-NVE) acquisition of control of several subsidiaries of Ørsted A/S. Based on an overall assessment, the DCCA assessed that the merger would give rise to unilateral effects (...)

The EU Court of Justice upholds the EU Commission’s fines to a fish farmer and processor company for infringing merger control rules (Marine Harvest) New
Hogan Lovells (London)
,
Hogan Lovells (London)
Norwegian salmon farmer Marine Harvest has been unsuccessful in its appeal to the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) regarding substantial and separate fines imposed on it by the European Commission for both failing to notify a merger and for ’jumping the gun’ in implementing the (...)

The French Competition Authority clarifies that deploying one company’s retail spaces within another company’s stores does not constitute a merger (Fnac-Darty / Carrefour)
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
The project to deploy Darty spaces within Carrefour hypermarkets does not constitute a merger and therefore does not have to be submitted to mandatory clearance by the Autorité de la concurrence* On 22 May 2020, Fnac-Darty notified the Autorité de la concurrence of its plan to deploy sales (...)

The US DoJ congratulates newly merged telecom operator on closing the agreed divestiture with satellite TV company (T-Mobile / Dish / Boost)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Justice Department Congratulates T-Mobile And Dish For Closing The Boost Divestiture* T-Mobile US Inc. (T-Mobile) and Dish Network Corporation (Dish) announced today that they closed T-Mobile’s divestiture of Boost Network (Boost) to Dish. Boost was legacy Sprint Corporation’s prepaid wireless (...)

The UK Competition Authority concludes that the merger of two suppliers of medical devices will lead to a reduction of competition (Stryker / Wright)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
Medical device suppliers’ merger raises competition concerns* The CMA has concluded that the merger of 2 suppliers of medical devices could lead to a reduction of competition in the supply of total ankle replacement prosthetics. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is concerned that, (...)

The US DoJ and FTC publish an updated version of the vertical merger guidelines
Hogan Lovells (Washington)
,
Hogan Lovells (Washington)
On 30 June 2020 the Department of Justice (DOJ) and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) (the agencies, collectively) announced the publication of new vertical merger guidelines (the new vertical guidelines or the 2020 Vertical Merger Guidelines). The new vertical guidelines describe how the agencies (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority sanctions pharmaceutical companies for failing to comply with the commitments to restore competition in the pharma market (Moench Coöperatif / Luis Doporto Alejandre)
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE sanctions Moench Coöperatif and Luis Doporto for failing to comply with the commitments made to totally and permanently eliminate any possible link between Nadro and Marzam, in the market for the distribution of pharmaceutical products* The commitments were accepted by the Board of (...)

The US FTC and DoJ issue new antitrust guidelines for evaluating vertical mergers
US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) (Washington)
FTC and DOJ Issue Antitrust Guidelines for Evaluating Vertical Mergers* New Vertical Merger Guidelines provide transparency on analytical techniques, practices, and enforcement policies The Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”) and the Department of Justice (“DOJ” or “Department”) issued today new (...)

The US DoJ and FTC issue new vertical merger guidelines
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Department of Justice And Federal Trade Commission Issue New Vertical Merger Guidelines* 2020 Guidelines More Accurately Represent Agencies’ Merger Review Process The Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission issued today new Vertical Merger Guidelines that outline how the federal (...)

The US DoJ and FTC release the updated version of the vertical merger guidelines
Shearman & Sterling (Washington)
,
Shearman & Sterling (Washington)
,
Shearman & Sterling (New York)
The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) (collectively, “Agencies”) released the final version of the Vertical Merger Guidelines (“Vertical Guidelines”) on June 30, 2020. The new Vertical Guidelines, which had not been updated in more than 35 years, outline how (...)

The French Competition Authority clears the merger of two agricultural cooperatives (Coopérative Dauphinoise / Terre d’Alliances)
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence clears, subject to several conditions, the merger of two agricultural cooperatives, Coopérative Dauphinoise and Terre d’Alliances* Background Agricultural cooperatives Coopérative Dauphinoise and Terre d’Alliances notified the Autorité de la concurrence of their (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority conditions the merger between a private investment fund in the health sector and a manufacturer of pipes on removing non-competition clauses from the merger agreement (PTM / Profluent Plastic Technologies)
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE conditions concentration between Profluent Plastic Technologies and Plastic Technology de México* In the originally planned transaction, the parties established a non-competition clause which included terms that could potentially affect the process of competition and free market access. (...)

The EU Commission refers the acquisition of a French distribution business to the French Competition Authority (Conforama France)
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
The European Commission just referred the acquisition of Conforama France by Mobilux (But) to the Autorité de la concurrence* Following the announcement of Conforama’s plan to restructure and transform its business in France in July 2019, Mobilux plans to acquire Conforama. In France, Mobilux (...)

The US FTC requests two casino operators to divest assets in two local markets as a condition of their merger (Eldorado Resorts / Caesars Entertainment)
US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) (Washington)
FTC Requires Casino Operators Eldorado Resorts, Inc. and Caesars Entertainment Corporation to Divest Assets in Two Local Markets as a Condition of Merger* The Federal Trade Commission will require casino operator Eldorado Resorts, Inc. to divest casino-related assets in the South Lake Tahoe (...)

The UK Competition Authority finds concerns in a digital advertising merger between two companies supplying content recommendation services to major news sites (Taboola / Outbrain)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
Competition concerns found in digital advertising merger* Taboola’s purchase of Outbrain raises competition concerns in the supply of content recommendation, a type of digital advertising. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has been investigating the anticipated purchase of Outbrain (...)

The US FTC clears transfer of ownership over certain assets between energy companies subject to divestments (Tri Star Energy / Hollingsworth Oil Company / C & H Properties / Ronald L. Hollingsworth)
US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) (Washington)
FTC Requires Divestitures as Condition of Tri Star Energy, LLC’s Acquisition of Certain Assets of Hollingsworth Oil Company, Inc., C & H Properties, and Ronald L. Hollingsworth* Tri Star Energy, LLC and Hollingsworth Oil Company, Inc., C & H Properties, and Ronald L. Hollingsworth have (...)

The Danish Competition Authority approves an energy and fiber optic group’s acquisition of several companies from another energy group with services covering mostly separate geographic markets, subject to divestment of customers in a highly overlapping market (SEAS-NVE / Ørsted)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
The Danish Competition Council has approved SEAS-NVE A/S’ acquisition of several companies from Ørsted A/S subject to commitments* On 28 May 2020, the Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (hereinafter “DCCA”) received a complete notification of SEAS-NVE A/S’ (hereinafter “SEAS-NVE”) (...)

The EU Commission opens in-depth investigation into proposed acquisition of a major financial data provider by one of the world’s largest stock exchange groups (Refinitiv / London Stock Exchange Group)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission opens in-depth investigation into proposed acquisition of Refinitiv by London Stock Exchange Group* The European Commission has opened an in-depth investigation to assess the proposed acquisition of Refinitiv by the London Stock Exchange Group (“LSEG”) under the EU Merger (...)

The UK Government introduces measures allowing it to intervene in merger transactions to mitigate the effects of public health emergencies following the COVID-19 outbreak Free
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (London)
,
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (London)
,
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Brussels)
On 22 June 2020, the UK Government introduced new measures allowing it to intervene in merger transactions “to maintain in the United Kingdom the capability to combat, and to mitigate the effects of, public health emergencies." The Government will be able to intervene on these grounds in any (...)

The UK Competition Authority finds competition concerns in Phase I investigation of educational supplies merger (Yorkshire Purchasing Organisation / Findel Education)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
Competition concerns raised over educational supplies merger* The CMA has found that YPO’s anticipated acquisition of Findel raises competition concerns in the supply of resources to educational institutions in the UK. Yorkshire Purchasing Organisation (YPO) and Findel Education Limited (...)

The Australian Competition Authority releases statement of issues and opens investigation into Big Tech company’s acquisition of wearable tech manufacturer (Google / Fitbit)
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
Google’s purchase of Fitbit raises preliminary competition concerns* The ACCC has today outlined preliminary concerns with Google’s proposed acquisition of Fitbit, stating that Google’s access to consumer health data may raise entry barriers, further entrench its dominant position and adversely (...)

The French Competition Authority clears merger in the consumer credit market (Crédit Agricole Consumer Finance / Ménafinance)
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence clears the acquisition of Ménafinance by Crédit Agricole Group* Crédit Agricole Consumer Finance (CACF) notified the Autorité de la concurrence of its proposed acquisition of sole control of Ménafinance. After examining the effects of the transaction, the Autorité (...)

The EU Commission opens in-depth investigation into the proposed merger of two global automotive companies (Fiat Chrysler / Peugeot)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission opens in-depth investigation into the proposed merger of PSA and FCA* The European Commission has opened an in-depth investigation to assess the proposed merger of automotive companies Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. (“FCA”) and Peugeot S.A. (“PSA”) under the EU Merger (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Authority clears joint acquisition of raw materials and recycled plastic company by private equity investment fund and by European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (Eco Baltia / INVL Baltic Sea Growth Fund / European Bank for Reconstruction and Development)
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
Konkurencijos Taryba Clears Acquisition of Latvian Company Eco Baltia* Konkurencijos taryba cleared the acquisition of 52.81 per cent of the Latvian company Eco Baltia indirectly through BSGF Salvus, and acquisition of joint control of Eco Baltia by the investment fund INVL Baltic Sea Growth (...)

The New Zealand Competition Authority clears merger between 2 suppliers of electronic payment terminals (Verifone / Smartpay)
New Zealand Commerce Commission
Commission grants clearance for Verifone to acquire Smartpay* The Commerce Commission has granted clearance to Verifone New Zealand (Verifone) to acquire the assets used by Smartpay Holdings Limited and its subsidiaries to operate the Smartpay business in New Zealand (Smartpay) (the proposed (...)

The Rotterdam District Court annuls the authorisation of the acquisition of postal services providers on the basis that it would result in a monopoly on the Dutch postal delivery market (Sandd / PostNL)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 11 June 2020, the Rotterdam District Court (the “Court”) annulled the authorisation of the acquisition of postal services provider Sandd by rival PostNL. The transaction had been authorised by the State Secretary for Economic Affairs and Climate Policy (the “State Secretary”) after receiving an (...)

The UK Competition Authority finds that a merger in the online secondary ticketing market raises competition concerns even after accounting for the COVID-19 difficulties (StubHub / viagogo) Free
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
Merger of viagogo and StubHub raises competition concerns* viagogo’s purchase of StubHub raises competition concerns in the online secondary ticketing market in the UK, a CMA investigation has found. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is concerned that the loss of competition brought (...)

The US FTC approves final order settling all charges that manufacturer of law enforcement equipment entered into anticompetitive agreements with seller of body-worn camera systems when they entered a merger of their businesses (Safariland / Axon / VieVu)
US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) (Washington)
FTC Approves Final Order Settling Charges that VieVu’s Former Parent Company Safariland Entered into Anticompetitive Agreements with Body-Worn Camera Systems Seller Axon* Following a public comment period, the Federal Trade Commission has approved a final order settling charges that Safariland, (...)

The OECD holds a roundtable on start-ups, killer acquisitions and merger control
OECD - Competition Division (Paris)
Questions over the competitive effects of the acquisition of start-ups or ‘nascent’ firms, by dominant incumbents have become a key part of the debate on how the effective merger control regimes have been in protecting competition during a period of increasing profits. One of the most discussed (...)

The OECD holds a roundtable on conglomerate effects of mergers
OECD - Competition Division (Paris)
Conglomerate effects arise when a merger has an effect on competition, but the merging firms’ products are not in the same product market, nor are they inputs or outputs of one another. Mergers exhibiting conglomerate effects have taken on a new prominence in the digital era, as the largest (...)

The OECD devotes a session to assess the sufficiency of current merger control frameworks to investigate and prohibit mergers
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
From 10-12 June 2020, the OECD held its 133rd Meeting of the Competition Committee. This session was devoted to assessing the sufficiency of current merger control frameworks to investigate and – where needed – prohibit mergers that eliminate nascent competition that would other- wise challenge (...)

The EU Commission refers to the French Competition Authority a takeover case of 567 French-owned hard discount stores by one of Europe’s main hard discount groups as per request of the acquisition parties (Leader Price / Aldi)
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
The European Commission refers to the Autorité de la concurrence the takeover transaction of 567 Leader Price stores by Aldi* A few months after Aldi announced the takeover of Leader Price stores, the parties concluded, in March, a promise to purchase for 567 Leader Price stores and 3 (...)

The EU Commission approves acquisition of global pharma company’s animal health division by animal health company subject to divestments (Bayer / Elanco Animal Health)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Mergers: Commission approves acquisition of Bayer’s animal health division by Elanco, subject to conditions* The European Commission has approved, under the EU Merger Regulation, the proposed acquisition of Bayer AGs animal health division by Elanco Animal Health Inc. The decision is (...)

The EU Commission conditionally clears an acquisition between two global developers and suppliers of veterinary pharmaceuticals (Elanco / BAH)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 8 June 2020, the Commission announced its conditional clearance of Elanco’s purchase of Bayer’s animal health division (“BAH”). Both Elanco and BAH are global developers and suppliers of veterinary pharmaceuticals, and the transaction will establish the largest animal health company worldwide. (...)

The UK Competition Authority finds competition concerns in merger of 2 leading wholesalers offering a wide range of commercial vehicle and trailer part types (Universal Components / 3G)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
Commercial vehicle and trailer parts merger raises competition concerns* Universal Components’ purchase of 3G raises competition concerns in the wholesale supply of commercial vehicle and trailer parts, a CMA investigation has found. Universal Components UK Limited (Universal Components), (...)

The Australian Competition Authority continues its investigation into one major airline’s acquisition of 19.9% stake in another with increased concern for smaller airlines due to COVID-19 (Qantas / Alliance Airlines) Free
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
Investigation into Qantas’s stake in Alliance Airlines continues* The ACCC is continuing to investigate Qantas Airways’ (Qantas) (ASX:QAN) acquisition of a 19.9 per cent stake in Alliance Aviation (Alliance) (ASX:AQZ) during these uncertain times in the aviation industry. Qantas acquired a 19.9 (...)

The EU General Court annuls the Commission’s decision prohibiting a proposed acquisition between two telecom operators with potentially significant implications for the EU merger control policy (Telefónica UK / Hutchison 3G UK)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
1. SUMMARY On 28 May 2020, the EU’s General Court handed down a ruling annulling the European Commission’s decision prohibiting the proposed acquisition of Telefónica UK (“O2”) by Hutchison 3G UK (“Three”). The ruling has potentially significant implications for mergers in the telecoms sector, as (...)

The EU General Court overturns the EU Commission’s prohibition of a mobile telecommunications merger (Telefónica UK / Hutchison 3G UK)
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Brussels)
,
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Cologne)
,
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (London)
In a landmark Judgment delivered on May 28, the General Court overturned the European Commission’s 2016 prohibition of the Three/O2 UK mobile telecommunications merger. The Judgment raises the bar for the Commission in respect of (1) the legal standard the Commission must meet; (2) the closeness (...)

The EU General Court annuls the Commission’s decision prohibiting the acquisition of two telecommunication companies (Telefónica UK / Hutchison 3G UK)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
1. Summary On 28 May 2020, the EU General Court handed down a ruling annulling the European Commission’s (“Commission”) decision prohibiting the proposed acquisition of Telefónica UK (“O2”) by Hutchison 3G UK (“Three”). The ruling has potentially significant implications for mergers in the telecoms (...)

State Aid

The EU Commission approves €200 million voucher scheme to support access to broadband services by low-income families in Italy New
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves €200 million voucher scheme to support access to broadband services by low-income families in Italy* The European Commission has approved under EU State aid rules a €200 million voucher scheme to help low-income families in Italy access high-speed broadband (...)

The EU Commission approves €6 billion Italian schemes to support SMEs affected by COVID-19 outbreak New Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves €6 billion Italian schemes to support SMEs affected by coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has approved three Italian schemes, with an overall budget of €6 billion, mainly consisting of incentives to the recapitalisation by private investors of small and (...)

The EU Commission approves €10 billion Spanish fund to provide debt and capital support to companies affected by the COVID-19 outbreak New Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves €10 billion Spanish fund to provide debt and capital support to companies affected by the coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has approved Spanish plans to set up a fund (Solvency Support Fund) with a budget of €10 billion that will invest through debt (...)

The EU Commission approves €840 million German guarantee scheme to protect consumers and support the travel industry in the context of the COVID-19 outbreak New Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves €840 million German guarantee scheme to protect consumers and support the travel industry in the context of the coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has approved, under EU State aid rules, a German State guarantee scheme worth €840 million to cover (...)

The EU Commission approves a €866 million Czech scheme to support businesses affected by the Covid-19 outbreak New Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves € 866 million Czech scheme to support businesses affected by coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has approved a CZK 22.9 billion (approximately € 866 million) Czech wage subsidy scheme providing support to enterprises affected by the coronavirus outbreak. (...)

The EU Commission launches a public consultation inviting comments on the revised EU guidelines on regional State aid New
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission invites stakeholders to provide comments on revised Regional Aid Guidelines* The European Commission has launched today a public consultation inviting all interested parties to comment on draft revised EU guidelines on regional State aid (the “Regional Aid Guidelines”). (...)

The EU Commission approves a €2.6 billion Polish scheme to support companies affected by Covid-19 outbreak New Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves €2.6 billion Polish scheme to support companies affected by coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has approved a €2.6 billion (PLN 11.5 billion) Polish scheme to support companies affected by the coronavirus outbreak. The scheme was approved under the State (...)

The EU General Court annuls the Commission’s decision regarding the Irish tax rulings in favour of a Big Tech firm (Apple Sales International / Apple Operations Europe)
European Court of Justice (Luxembourg)
The General Court of the European Union annuls the decision taken by the Commission regarding the Irish tax rulings in favour of Apple* The General Court annuls the contested decision because the Commission did not succeed in showing to the requisite legal standard that there was an advantage (...)

The EU General Court strikes down the Commission’s decision ordering Ireland to recover €13 billion from a big tech company for illegal State aid (Apple) New
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Brussels)
,
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (London)
,
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Brussels)
On July 15, 2020, the European Union’s second- highest court, the General Court (the “Court”), annulled the 2016 decision of the European Commission (the “Commission”) ordering Ireland to recover €13 billion (€14.3 billion with interest) in back-taxes from Apple which the Commission considered to be (...)

The EU General Court overturns the Commission’s biggest State aid recovery order worth over €13 billion in tax advantages (Apple)
University of Oxford
Apple: One Case to Rule Them All* Some cases just have it all; the Apple case is one of them. First, size: at more than thirteen billion euros, the recovery order Ireland had to enforce dwarfed the previously biggest one (EDF, at around one billion euros). Second, international political (...)

The EU Commission recommends that Members States not grant financial support, including State aid, to companies with links to tax havens, especially in the context of the COVID-19 outbreak Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State Aid: Commission recommends not granting financial support to companies with links to tax havens* The European Commission has today recommended that Member States do not grant financial support to companies with links to countries that are on the EU’s list of non-cooperative tax (...)

The EU Commission approves Dutch plans to provide €3.4 billion in urgent liquidity support to national airline due to the COVID-19 outbreak (KLM) Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves Dutch plans to provide €3.4 billion in urgent liquidity support to KLM* The European Commission has approved, under EU State aid rules, a €3.4 billion Dutch aid measure consisting of a State guarantee on loans and a subordinated State loan to KLM to provide urgent (...)

The EU Commission approves €6.2 billion Italian grants scheme to support small businesses and self-employed affected by COVID-19 outbreak Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves €6.2 billion Italian grants scheme to support small businesses and self-employed affected by coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has approved a €6.2 billion Italian scheme to support small businesses and self-employed affected by the coronavirus outbreak. (...)

The EU Commission approves German fund to enable up to €500 billion of liquidity and capital support to enterprises affected by the COVID-19 outbreak Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves German fund to enable up to €500 billion of liquidity and capital support to enterprises affected by the coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has approved German plans to set up a fund with a budget of up to €500 billion for providing guarantees and (...)

The EU Commission adopts a third amendment to the State aid temporary framework New Free
Kirkland & Ellis (London)
,
Kirkland & Ellis (London)
,
Kirkland & Ellis (London)
The EC’s third amendment to the State aid Temporary Framework* On 29 June 2020, the European Commission (“EC”) adopted a third amendment to the Temporary Framework of 19 March 2020 (“Temporary Framework”) to extend the options available to Member State governments seeking to support their economies (...)

The EU Court of Justice narrows down the concept of “undertaking” with regard to health insurance bodies (Dôvera zdravotná poistʼovňa) New
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
The Court of Justice of the European Union’s (the “Court of Justice”) judgment of 11 June 2020, Commission v. Dôvera zdravotná poistʼovňa is another brick in the case law concerning the concept of “undertaking” with regard to health insurance bodies. The background of the case is a Slovak compulsory (...)

The EU Court of Justice clarifies the conditions governing the legality of an injunction issued at the same time as a decision to open a formal State aid investigation (Hungary / Commission) New
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
,
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 4 June 2020, the Court of Justice of the European Union (the “Court of Justice”) delivered an important judgment clarifying the conditions under which the European Commission (the “Commission”) can issue an injunction on the basis of Article 11 of the former State aid procedural Regulation No (...)

The EU Commission includes recapitalisation measures in the temporary framework for State aid measures to support the economy during the COVID-19 outbreak New
Covington & Burling (Brussels)
,
Covington & Burling (Brussels)
,
Covington & Burling (Brussels)
On 8 May 2020, the European Commission (“Commission”) adopted a second amendment (the “New Amendment”) to the Temporary Framework for State aid measures to support the economy during the COVID-19 outbreak (the “Temporary Framework”) (see our previous post on the Temporary Framework here and on the (...)

The EU Advocate General Hogan releases its opinion on State aid for a new nuclear power plant in the UK (Hinkley Point C) New
Lund University
Hinkley Point C – Is semi-permeable membrane protecting the internal market’s nucleus?* Who would have thought that a case from the UK would potentially shape the EU State aid policy for years to come, being decided just around the time of the UK’s exit from the EU? This situation is made all (...)

The EU Commission approves €150 million Austrian subordinated loan to compensate national airline company for damages suffered due to COVID-19 outbreak (Austrian Airlines) Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves €150 million Austrian subordinated loan to compensate Austrian Airlines for damages suffered due to coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has found an Austrian €150 million subordinated loan (convertible into a grant) in favour of Austrian Airlines AG to be (...)

The EU Commission approves Latvian fund to enable €100 million of liquidity and capital support to large enterprises affected by the COVID-19 outbreak Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves Latvian fund to enable €100 million of liquidity and capital support to large enterprises affected by the coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has approved Latvian plans to set up a fund with a current target size of €100 million that will invest through (...)

The EU Commission approves €250 million Latvian measure to recapitalise national airline company in the context of the COVID-19 outbreak (airBaltic) Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves €250 million Latvian measure to recapitalise airBaltic* The European Commission has approved a €250 million Latvian measure to recapitalise airBaltic in the context of the coronavirus outbreak. The scheme was approved under the State aid Temporary Framework. (...)

The EU Commission prolongs EU State aid rules and adopts targeted adjustments to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 outbreak Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission prolongs EU State aid rules and adopts targeted adjustments to mitigate impact of coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has prolonged the validity of certain State aid rules which would otherwise expire at the end of 2020. In this context, and to take the effects (...)

The EU Commission approves €46.5 million Hungarian investment aid for a chemical company’s new lithium-ion battery separator film plant (Toray)
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves €46.5 million Hungarian investment aid to Toray’s lithium-ion battery separator film plant* The European Commission has found Hungary’s €46.5 million investment aid to the chemical company Toray for a new battery separator film plant in the Közép-Dunántúl (Central (...)

The EU Commission approves a €30 billion French subordinated loan scheme to support companies affected by the COVID-19 outbreak Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves €30 billion French subordinated loan scheme to support companies affected by the coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has approved a €30 billion French subordinated loan scheme to support companies affected by the coronavirus outbreak. The scheme was (...)

The EU Commission adopts a third amendment to extend the scope of the State aid Temporary Framework to support micro, small and start-up companies and incentivise private investments during the COVID-19 outbreak Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission expands Temporary Framework to further support micro, small and start-up companies and incentivise private investments* The European Commission has adopted a third amendment to extend the scope of the State aid Temporary Framework adopted on 19 March 2020 to support the (...)

The EU Commission approves €7.6 billion Italian tax schemes to support companies and self-employed workers affected by COVID-19 outbreak Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves €7.6 billion Italian tax schemes to support companies and self-employed workers affected by coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has approved four Italian aid schemes to support companies and self-employed workers affected by the coronavirus outbreak. The (...)

The EU Commission approves €6 billion German measure to recapitalise major national airline and weather the economic effects of COVID-19 outbreak (Lufthansa) Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves €6 billion German measure to recapitalise Lufthansa* The European Commission has approved German plans to contribute €6 billion to the recapitalisation of Deutsche Lufthansa AG (DLH), the parent company of Lufthansa Group. The measure was approved under the State (...)

The EU Commission opens in-depth investigation into the financing of Czech state-owned postal operator’s universal service obligation (Czech Post)
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission opens in-depth investigation into the financing of Czech Post’s universal service obligation* The European Commission has opened an in-depth investigation to assess whether the compensation granted by Czechia to Czech Post to fulfil its public service mission is in line (...)

The EU Commission consults the Member States on the proposal to expand State aid Temporary Framework to further support micro, small and start-up companies and incentivise private investments in the wake of COVID-19 outbreak Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
Coronavirus: Commission Statement on consulting Member States on proposal to expand State aid Temporary Framework to further support micro, small and start-up companies and incentivise private investments* Today, the European Commission has sent to Member States for consultation a draft (...)

The EU Commission publishes an overview of the State aid measures approved under the temporary State aid framework since the COVID-19 pandemic Free
Bird & Bird (Copenhagen)
,
Bird & Bird (Copenhagen)
On 12 June 2020, the European Commission published an overview of the State aid measures approved under Article 107(2)b TFEU, Article 107(3)b and under the Temporary State Aid Framework since the beginning of the Coronavirus outbreak. Following the outbreak of the Coronavirus on 19 March 2020, (...)

The EU Commission approves Italian tax measures for maritime transport
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves Italian tax measures for maritime transport* The European Commission has approved under EU State aid rules the prolongation until end 2023 of various Italian support measures for maritime transport under Italy’s “International Registry” scheme. The scheme encourages (...)

The EU Court of Justice reverses the General Court’s ruling and upholds the Commission’s decision according to which health insurance bodies operating under Slovak State supervision do not fall within the rules of EU law on State aid
European Court of Justice (Luxembourg)
The Court of Justice upholds the decision of the Commission according to which health insurance bodies operating under Slovak State supervision do not fall within the rules of EU law on State aid* The General Court’s judgment upholding an action brought against that decision is set aside By its (...)

The EU Commission approves Polish recapitalisation scheme to enable up to €1.65 billion of capital support to SMEs and large enterprises affected by the COVID-19 outbreak Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves Polish recapitalisation scheme to enable up to €1.65 billion of capital support to SMEs and large enterprises affected by the coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has approved a Polish recapitalisation scheme of up to €1.65 billion (PLN 7.5 billion) to (...)

The EU Commission approves €3.7 billion Swedish scheme to compensate companies for damages suffered due to COVID-19 outbreak Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves €3.7 billion Swedish scheme to compensate companies for damages suffered due to coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has found an approximately €3.7 billion (SEK 39 billion) Swedish scheme that partially compensates companies exposed to large turnover (...)

The EU Commission approves €1.2 billion Portuguese urgent liquidity support to its major national airline company, whose already existing liquidity needs to be increased with COVID-19 (TAP) Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves €1.2 billion Portuguese urgent liquidity support to TAP* The European Commission has approved, under EU State aid rules, Portugal’s plans to grant a €1.2 billion rescue loan in favour of Transportes Aéreos Portugueses SGPS S.A. (“TAP”). The measure will provide TAP (...)

The EU Commission approves €33 million Cypriot scheme deferring payment of VAT to support companies affected by COVID-19 outbreak Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves €33 million Cypriot scheme deferring payment of VAT to support companies affected by coronavirus outbreak* The European Commission has approved a €33 million Cypriot aid scheme deferring VAT payments to ease the liquidity constraints of companies affected by the (...)

The EU Commission approves €286 million Finnish State aid measure to recapitalise national airline which is considered essential to the recovery of the national economy after the COVID-19 outbreak (Finnair) Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves €286 million Finnish measure to recapitalise Finnair* The European Commission has approved Finnish plans to contribute to the recapitalisation of Finnair through the subscription of new shares by the State in the rights issue launched by Finnair on 10 June 2020 in (...)

The EU Commission approves €5 billion French “umbrella” scheme to support research, development, testing infrastructures and production of COVID-19 relevant products Free
DG COMP (Brussels)
State aid: Commission approves €5 billion French “umbrella” scheme to support research, development, testing infrastructures and production of coronavirus relevant products* The European Commission has approved a €5 billion French “umbrella” scheme to support research and development, testing and (...)

The EU Commission adopts the temporary framework for State aid measures to support the economy during the COVID-19 outbreak Free
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 19 March 2020, the Commission adopted the Temporary Framework for State aid measures to support the economy in the current COVID-19 outbreak (“Temporary Framework”). On 4 April 2020, it published a first amendment to the Temporary Frame- work, which significantly broadens its scope of (...)

Procedures

The Peruvian Competition Authority publishes its dawn raid guidelines New
Peruvian Competition Authority - INDECOPI (Lima)
Indecopi publishes its Dawn Raids Guidelines, to establish the scope of these investigation actions that allow the detection of anticompetitive conducts* The Guidelines describe the main characteristics of dawn raids carried out during investigations in competition matters. Its publication (...)

The EU Commission adopts guidance for national courts when handling disclosure of confidential information
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission adopts guidance for national courts when handling disclosure of confidential information* The European Commission has adopted a Communication on the protection of confidential information by national courts in proceedings for the private enforcement of EU competition law. (...)

The EU Commission adopts guidance for national courts when handling disclosure of confidential information in proceedings for the private enforcement of EU competition law
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission adopts guidance for national courts when handling disclosure of confidential information* The European Commission has adopted a Communication on the protection of confidential information by national courts in proceedings for the private enforcement of EU competition (...)

The UK Competition Authority publishes a third update on its COVID-19 taskforce New Free
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
The CMA has published a third update from its COVID-19 taskforce, which monitors and responds to competition and consumer problems arising from the pandemic.* As part of the taskforce’s work, it has been asking the public for information about businesses behaving unfairly, for example regarding (...)

The Japanese FTC issues a draft of amendments on the calculation of fines and reformation of the leniency system and seeks comments from the public New
White & Case (Tokyo)
,
White & Case (Tokyo)
,
White & Case (Tokyo)
On June 29, 2020, the Japan Fair Trade Commission (“JFTC”) issued a draft of amendments to relevant cabinet orders and rules (“Drafts”) in accordance with the amendments to the Anti-Monopoly Act (“AMA”) previously passed in June 2019 (“2019 AMA Amendments” or “Amendments”). The JFTC is seeking (...)

The UK Competition Authority fines £20,000 a digital advertising company for failure to respond to a market study information request into online platforms (AppNexus) New
Ashurst (London)
,
Ashurst (London)
AppNexus Europe Limited ("AppNexus") has been fined GBP 20,000 for failing to comply with an information request issued by the UK Competition and Markets Authority ("CMA"). The fine relates to an information request imposed by the CMA as part of its ongoing market study into online platforms (...)

The US DoJ welcomes the Congressional reauthorization of the antitrust criminal penalty enhancement and reform act
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Department of Justice Applauds Congressional Passage Of Reauthorization Of The Antitrust Criminal Penalty Enhancement And Reform Act* On June 25, the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate passed identical bills, H.R. 7036 and S. 3377, to repeal the sunset provision of the Antitrust Criminal (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority issues regulatory provisions on the use of electronic means in investigations and other procedures and considers the possibility of conducting all of its future procedures electronically
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE issues Regulatory Provisions on the use of electronic means in investigation procedures and other procedures* Through these Provisions and the technological tools that will accompany them, COFECE takes a step forward towards the possibility of conducting all of its procedures (...)

The Lithuanian Parliament amends the Competition Act with regard to such matters as independence, resources, powers and sanctions, in line with provisions of the Directive of the EU Parliament and Council
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
Competition Law Amendments Will Ensure More Effective Competition Enforcement in Lithuania* Today Seimas adopted amendments to the Law on Competition which will transpose the provisions of the Directive of the European Parliament and Council into national law, ensuring uniform regulation of (...)

The Hong Kong Competition Authority publishes policy on recommended pecuniary penalties for anti-competitive conduct
Hong Kong Competition Commission
Competition Commission publishes Policy on Recommended Pecuniary Penalties for anti-competitive conduct* The Competition Commission (Commission) today published a policy on recommended pecuniary penalties (Policy) for anti-competitive conduct. The Policy outlines the general principles and (...)

The Turkish Parliament approves amendments to the national competition law which introduces new mechanisms as to the selection of cases for the Authority to focus on, a new substantive test for merger control, behavioral and structural remedies for anti-competitive conduct and new procedural tools
ELIG Gürkaynak Attorneys-at-Law (Istanbul)
After rounds of revisions and failed attempts of enactment over a span of several years, the proposal for an amendment to the Law No. 4054 on Protection of Competition (“Law no. 4054”) (“Amendment Proposal”) has finally been approved by the Turkish parliament, namely the Grand National Assembly of (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority resumes dawn raids, interrogations, and public hearings that were temporarily suspended due to the COVID-19 outbreak Free
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (The Hague)
ACM resumes dawn raids, interrogations, and public hearings* The Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) has resumed conducting unannounced dawn raids and interrogations as part of investigations into possible violations committed by companies. In addition, ACM has resumed (...)

The German Competition Authority announces modifications to the German Competition Act due to COVID-19 are coming into force Free
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Modifications to German Competition Act (GWB) due to COVID-19 come into force* Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic modifications to the German Competition Act (GWB), which will come into force on Friday 29 May 2020, have been announced today in the German Federal Law Gazette. The (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority confirms the final version of the guide on competition compliance programmes as a mitigating factor and means of avoiding public procurement bans
Herbert Smith Freehills (Madrid)
,
Herbert Smith Freehills (Madrid)
,
Herbert Smith Freehills (Madrid)
The Spanish National Markets and Competition Commission (“CNMC”) has confirmed in the final version of the Guide on compliance programmes in relation to competition rules (the “Guide”) that compliance programmes could potentially modulate the penalties imposed on companies investigated for (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority publishes a guide on compliance programmes in relation to antitrust laws
Spanish Competition Authority (Madrid)
The CNMC publishes a guide on compliance programmes in relation to anti- trust laws* It contains the criteria that the CNMC would take into consideration when analysing the effectiveness of a compliance programme. It includes the consolidated principles used by other competition authorities to (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority publishes its guidelines on confidentiality claims for competition procedures
Spanish Competition Authority (Madrid)
The CNMC publishes its guidelines on confidentiality claims for competition procedures* It is providing guidelines to companies and other stakeholders when submitting confidentiality claims to the CNMC It considers the most common cases under the CNMC’s assessment and judgments on the matter. It (...)

The EU Commission launches a public consultation to seek views from the public on the adoption of a regulation that would introduce a market investigation tool
McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
,
McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
,
McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
On 2 June 2020, the European Commission (the Commission) published its inception impact assessment (or roadmap) on the possible adoption of regulation that would introduce a new market investigation tool. This assessment was immediately followed by the launch of a public consultation to seek (...)

The EU Commission launches consultations on ex-ante competition enforcement in platform-based and other industries
Baker Botts (Washington)
,
Baker Botts (Brussels)
,
Baker Botts (Brussels)
Recently, the European Commission (“EC”) launched two major public consultations for new legislative tools intended to step up antitrust enforcement in digital and other markets. One consultation relates to a new competition enforcement tool that would allow the EC to pro-actively intervene in (...)

The EU Commission prepares a new competition enforcement tool to extend the Competition Authority’s current enforcement powers and allow for far-reaching intervention in structural competition concerns
Covington & Burling (Frankfurt)
,
Covington & Burling (Brussels)
The European Commission (”Commission”) is preparing the ground for a new competition enforcement tool. This new tool could substantially extend the competition authority’s current enforcement powers and allow for far-reaching intervention where the Commission identifies structural competition (...)

The High Court of Delhi sides with the Indian Competition Authority and resolves the jurisdictional issue between the latter and the Intellectual Property Rights Authorities under the Patents Act (Monsanto)
Hidayatullah National Law University (Raipur)
Following the appeal made against several orders of Competition Commission of India (“CCI”) by Monsanto Holdings Pvt. Ltd. (“MHPL”), the Delhi High Court on 20th May, 2020 handed down the judgement of MHPL & Ors. v. CCI, clarifying mainly the jurisdictional issues between the IPR authorities (...)

Regulatory

The French Competition Authority develops new map proposals for the establishment of court bailiffs and judicial auctioneers taking into account the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic New Free
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence will develop new map proposals for the establishment of court bailiffs and judicial auctioneers* Its new recommendations will take account the short-, medium- and long-term impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the activity of these two professions. Background In (...)

The Romanian Competition Authority recommends „relaxation” of conditions for registering the mortgage notices in the national register for movable property publicity
Romanian Competition Council (Bucharest)
The Competition Council Recommends „relaxation” of Conditions for Registering the Mortgage Notices in the National Register for Movable Property Publicity* Following a sector inquiry, the Competition Council found that certain conditions of accessing the market for mortgage registration services (...)

The EU Commission puts into operation FDI coordination six months early, proposing cooperation on an informal and voluntary basis New
Covington & Burling (London)
,
Covington & Burling (Frankfurt)
,
Covington & Burling (Brussels)
The European Commission has added to its call to Member States to act on foreign direct investment (“FDI”) by announcing that it is ready to support EU-level cooperation on FDI now. Spurred on by the COVID-19 crisis and the perceived vulnerability of key EU assets, the informal cooperation (...)

The EU Commission publishes a report on the impact of the interchange fees regulation for card-based payment transactions
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission publishes report on the impact of the Interchange Fees Regulation* The European Commission has published a report on the impact of the Interchange Fees Regulation (“IFR”) for card-based payment transactions. In line with the requirements on the IFR itself, it has been sent (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority reports the Ministry of Energy’s new national electric system policy to the Supreme Court for undermining the fundamental principles of competition
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE files a constitutional controversy against the issuance of the Policy for reliability, security, continuity and quality in the National Electric System* The Mexican Federal Economic Competition Commission (COFECE or Commission) filed a constitutional controversy before the Supreme Court (...)

The Australian Competition Authority welcomes the Government’s direction to actively monitor and report on competition conditions in the national air travel market
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
ACCC to monitor competition in the domestic airline market* he ACCC welcomes today’s direction from the Australian Government to actively monitor and regularly report on the domestic air travel market, particularly in relation to its competitiveness. The aviation industry globally has been (...)

The Irish Competition Authority launches public consultation on public liability insurance market
Irish Competition Authority (Dublin)
CCPC launches public consultation on public liability insurance market* The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) announced today that it has opened a public consultation and is seeking views from stakeholders on their experiences in the public liability insurance market. (...)

The Romanian Competition Authority expects to see price reductions in the natural gas market following its liberalization and global decreases in oil prices
Romanian Competition Council (Bucharest)
The Liberalization of the Natural Gas Market Should Lead to Price Reduction* In the context of the liberalization of the gas market for household consumers, the Competition Council points out that both at wholesale and retail level (household customers), there must be a normal competitive (...)

The German Competition Authority supports the German association of the automotive industry’s measures for overcoming the challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic in the automotive industry Free
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Crisis management measures in the automotive industry - Bundeskartellamt supports the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA) in developing framework conditions under competition law aspects* The German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA) has presented measures for (...)

The French Competition Authority publishes its study on competition and e-commerce
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
The Autorité has published a study on competition and e-commerce* The growth of e-commerce is profoundly changing distribution. The physical distribution model is facing strong competition from the growth of online sales, which may be the result of “pure play” online retailers and strategies (...)

The Hungarian Competition Authority launches a sector inquiry into the television broadcasting and distribution markets
Hungarian Competition Authority (Budapest)
The Hungarian Competition Authority has launched a sector inquiry into the television broadcasting and distribution markets* According to market signals received by the Hungarian Competition Authority (GVH), television broadcasters provide their services to larger television distributors at (...)

The Peruvian Competition Authority publishes guidelines on competition compliance programs aimed at preventing companies from engaging in anticompetitive behavior
Peruvian Competition Authority - INDECOPI (Lima)
Indecopi publishes its "Guidelines on Competition Compliance Programs” which seeks to prevent the risks of engaging in anticompetitive behavior* The Commission for the Defense of Free Competition (CLC) introduced its “Guidelines on Competition Compliance Programs” (https://bit.ly/2MdDfqO) to (...)

The US FTC supports new provisions by the US centers for medicare & medicaid services aimed at reducing or eliminating restrictive Medicare payment requirements for telehealth and related services during the COVID-19 pandemic Free
US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) (Washington)
FTC Comment Supports Provisions in Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ Interim Final Rule that Reduce or Eliminate Restrictive Medicare Payment Requirements for Telehealth and Related Services during Pandemic* The staffs of the Federal Trade Commission’s Office of Policy Planning, (...)

The French Competition Authority launches public consultation on the freedom of establishment of notaries that will account for effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the activity of notaries Free
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
New opinion on the freedom of establishment of notaries: the Autorité launches a consultation* The Autorité de la Concurrence launches a public consultation with a view to preparing a new opinion on the freedom of establishment of notaries and proposing a revision of the map that was published (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority identifies competition problems in the fifth stowage market’s framework agreement in the port state sector
Bird & Bird (Madrid)
,
Bird & Bird (Madrid)
Since the European Court of Justice ("ECJ") judgment in 2014 in case Commission v. Spain (C-576/13), which declared the Spanish regime for stevedores incompatible with the freedom of establishment, there has been a progressive modification of the national regulation in order to liberalise the (...)

The French Competition Authority along with other French public and administrative authorities take action on climate change
Covington & Burling (Brussels)
,
Covington & Burling (Brussels)
,
Covington & Burling (Brussels)
At a time when COVID-19 is having direct and indirect effects on the reduction of greenhouse gas (“GHG”) emissions and ensuing global warming, eight French regulators, including the French Competition Authority, issued on 5 May 2020 a joint working paper in which they highlight the need to take (...)

All issues

  • Latest News issue 
  • All News issues
  • Latest Special issue 
  • All Special issues

Testimonials