Price abuses

Anticompetitive practices

The Australian Federal Court approves a plan for an airline company to pay its fine in installments (Garuda)
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
Garuda drops appeal, to pay $19m price fixing penalty in instalments* The Federal Court has approved a payment plan for airline PT Garuda Indonesia Ltd (Garuda) to pay a $19 million penalty the Court previously ordered relating to a long-running ACCC action against a global price fixing cartel (...)

The US DoJ charges two clinical directors for price-fixing for health care workers and obstructing the FTC’s investigation
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Second Individual Charged with Fixing Wages for Health Care Workers and Obstructing FTC Investigation* A federal grand jury in the Eastern District of Texas returned a superseding indictment charging two Texas men with conspiring to fix prices by lowering rates paid to certain health care (...)

The German Competition Authority ensures equal opportunities for online sales regarding a national equipment manufacturer’s distribution model (Liebherr)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt ensures equal opportunities for online sales in the new Liebherr distribution model* After an intervention by the Bundeskartellamt, Liebherr-Hausgeräte Vertriebs- und Service GmbH has agreed not to use certain clauses in its sales conditions which in the authority’s preliminary (...)

The UK Competition Authority launches its Digital Markets Unit in order to boost and regulate online competition
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
New watchdog to boost online competition launches* A tough new regulator to help make sure tech giants such as Facebook and Google cannot exploit their market dominance to crowd out competition and stifle innovation online has launched. Digital Markets Unit begins work marking major milestone (...)

The Austrian Competition Authority accepts commitments and closes its pharmaceutical pricing investigation on the sale of a brain tumor treatment (Merck Sharp / Dohme)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
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Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
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Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 2 April 2021, the Austrian competition authority accepted commitments and closed its case concerning pricing strategies alleged to unlawfully hinder entry by generic competitors. According to the authority’s press release, the investigated pricing strategy concerned the product Temodal (...)

The US DoJ indicts a health care staffing company for collusion in order to suppress wages of school nurses (VDA OC)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Health Care Staffing Company and Executive Indicted for Colluding to Suppress Wages of School Nurses* Alleged allocation and wage-fixing scheme targeted nurses staffed at the Clark County School District who were serving medically fragile students. A federal grand jury in Las Vegas, Nevada, (...)

The Lithuanian Supreme Administrative Court upholds the Competition Authority’s decision regarding a cartel between 26 driving schools and a driving schools association
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
SUPREME ADMINISTRATIVE COURT OF LITHUANIA UPHOLDS COMPETITION AUTHORITY’S DECISION ON DRIVING SCHOOLS’ CARTELS* Driving schools and the Lithuanian association of driving schools (Association) which agreed to set prices of driving services for consumers will not avoid sanctions for cartel (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority notifies economic agents of a statement of probable responsibility for possible collusion in the market of land passenger transportation
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE notifies economic agents of a statement of probable responsibility for a possible collusion in the market for land passenger transportation* With this notification of a statement of probable responsibility, the trial-like procedure initiates, in which the economic agents can present (...)

The Dusseldorf Court aspires to submit, once it is phrased, its questions to the EU Court of Justice about a social network data protection (Facebook)
Spieker & Jaeger (Dortmund)
Of Pricing Guns, Social Networks and GDPR: The Düsseldorf Higher Regional Courts submits Facebook Case to the CJEU* On 24 March 2021 the Higher Regional Court (‘Oberlandesgericht’) of Düsseldorf put yet another twist to the ‘Facebook Saga’. Although the formal written submission is not yet (...)

The Danish High Court founds that the agreement fixing the price of subscriptions concluded by a natural gas company had an anticompetitive intent and breached the Competition Act (Hovedstadsregionens og Midt-Nords Naturgasselskab I/S)
Bird & Bird (Copenhagen)
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Bird & Bird (Copenhagen)
The Danish High Court has affirmed that Article 6(1) of the Danish Competition Act (corresponding to Article 101(1) TFEU), was infringed by a natural gas company, Hovedstadsregionens og Midt-Nords Naturgasselskab I/S (“HMN”), the trade association and two subcontractors, as these parties entered (...)

The UK Competition Authority investigates a Big Tech company over suspected anti-competitive behaviour (Apple)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
CMA investigates Apple over suspected anti-competitive behaviour* The CMA has launched an investigation into Apple following complaints that its terms and conditions for app developers are unfair and anti-competitive. In addition to designing, manufacturing and marketing electronic devices (...)

The Finnish Market Court finds that three manufacturers of expanded polystyrene engaged in a single and continuous national price-fixing cartel (Jackon Finland / UK-Muovi / Styroplast)
Bird & Bird (Helsinki)
On 3 March 2021, the Market Court agreed with the submission of the Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority ("FCCA"), that three manufacturers of expanded polystyrene (“EPS”), a building insulation material, had engaged in a national price fixing cartel lasting one and a half years. One of (...)

The US DoJ fines the largest national chicken producer for price fixing (Pilgrim’s)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
One of the Nation’s Largest Chicken Producers Pleads Guilty to Price Fixing and is Sentenced to a $107 Million Criminal Fine First Corporation Pleads Guilty in Ongoing Criminal Antitrust Investigation into the Broiler Chicken Industry Pilgrim’s Pride Corporation (Pilgrim’s), a major broiler (...)

The French Competition Authority declines urgent interim measures but continues to investigate the abuse of a dominant position from a company in the electricity sector (Plum / EDF)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
After receiving a complaint from an electricity supplier, the Autorité de la concurrence has not issued urgent interim measures against EDF but continues its investigation into the merits of the case* The electricity supplier Plüm Energie, which offers the supply of electricity to local and (...)

The Hong Kong Competition Authority issues infringement notices to six hotel groups and a tour counter operator for facilitating a price-fixing cartel
Hong Kong Competition Commission
Competition Commission issues infringement notices to six hotel groups and a tour counter operator for facilitating a price-fixing cartel* The Competition Commission (“Commission”) has issued infringement notices to seven entities, including six hotel groups and a tour counter operator (...)

The Hong Kong Competition Authority issues infringement notices to six hotel groups and a tour operator for facilitating cartel conduct
Ashurst (Singapore)
On 26 January 2021, Hong Kong’s Competition Commission (HKCC) issued infringement notices to six hotel groups and a tour operator for facilitating a cartel arrangement between two competing travel service providers, which fixed the prices of tourist attractions and transportation tickets in Hong (...)

The Finnish Competition Authority proposes a €22 million penalty to the Market Court on six companies operating in the real estate management sector for fixed prices
Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (Helsinki)
FCCA proposes that EUR 22 million in penalty payments be imposed for a price cartel on companies in real estate management and the Finnish Real Estate Management Federation* The Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (FCCA) proposes that the Market Court impose penalty payments in total of (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority concludes that there is a lack of competition in the maritime passenger transportation market in the islands of Mujeres and Cozumel (Magna)
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
Lack of competition is preliminarily determined in maritime passenger transportation in the ferry modality in Isla Mujeres and Cozumel* In the Preliminary Investigative Opinion, the Investigative Authority concluded that Naviera Magna has a high market participation and the capacity to fix (...)

The Czech Competition Authority fines a national sports equipment distributor for dictating prices to sellers (Abistore)
Czech Competition Authority (Brno)
The fine imposed on abistore confirmed, the distributor of sports equipment dictated prices to sellers* The Chairman of the Office for the Protection of Competition Petr Mlsna confirmed the imposition of the fine of CZK 1,851,000 on the undertaking ABISTORE SPORT, s. r. o. (hereafter referred (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority fines two national pharmaceutical producers of PET radiopharmaceuticals for €5.76 million (Advanced Accelerator Applications / Novartis)
Spanish Competition Authority (Madrid)
The CNMC fines the two main pharmaceutical producers of PET radiopharmaceuticals in Spain for €5.76 million* Radiopharmaceuticals are used in nuclear medicine tests to detect and monitor diseases such as cancer. The companies formed a cartel that, for at least four years, allocated the (...)

The Finnish Competition Authority releases two reports on positive and negative effects of Algorithms on competition
Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (Helsinki)
Continuous development of algorithms requires ensuring the functioning of competition and the interests of consumers* Algorithms may have both positive and negative effects on competition and consumers. Two reports by the Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (FCCA) show that the current (...)

The Russian Competition Authority fines a cartel for price fixing in the fuel and lubricants sector (Nova / PNT / Belaya Zvezda)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
Cartel will pay more than 400 million fine for maintaining prices for fuel and lubricants* The FAS Russia brought the cartel participants to administrative responsibility By results of consideration of appeals of the Prosecutor General of the Russian Federation, the FAS Russia ruled against (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority publishes a study regarding competition risks in relation to paid ranking
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 2 February 2021, the Dutch Authority of Consumers and Markets (“ACM”) published a study on paid ranking. Paid ranking is a practice whereby businesses pay online platforms for a better position in search results. The ACM found that paid ranking creates risks for consumers and may even restrict (...)

The Polish Competition Authority initiates proceedings against retail chains suspected of applying unfair retrospective discounts (Kaufland Polska Markety / Eurocash / Intermarche)
Polish Competition Authority (Warsaw)
The President of UOKiK has initiated proceedings against other retail chains suspected of applying unfair retrospective discounts* President of UOKiK Tomasz Chróstny initiated investigation procedures towards Kaufland Polska Markety, Eurocash and SCA PR Polska (Intermarche). The objections (...)

The UK Competition Authority warns firms over price-fixing of supplies to disabled students
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
CMA warns firms over price-fixing of supplies to disabled students* The CMA has cautioned companies supplying goods and services to disabled university students, following concerns that there may have been price-fixing. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has sent advisory letters to (...)

The French Competition Authority approves a building games company’s price discount system subject to conditions (Lego)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Lego makes commitments to the Autorité de la concurrence to amend its price discount system* Following an open procedure before the Autorité de la concurrence, the building games company Lego France, a subsidiary of Lego Group, enters into commitments designed to facilitate access for all of its (...)

The French Competition Authority publishes a study on how competition rules apply to professional bodies
Bird & Bird (Paris)
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Bird & Bird (Paris)
While the ECN+ Directive is about to be transposed into French law, which will result in exposing professional bodies to potentially much heavier sanctions than under the current legal framework, the French Competition Authority (FCA) recently published a study on how competition rules apply to (...)

The French Competition Authority accepts a price discount system for commitments intended to protect pure players (Lego)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 27 January 2021, the French Competition Authority (“FCA”) accepted the commitments offered by Lego France (“Lego”) after an investigation into the alleged bias towards brick-and-mortar stores resulting from Lego’s functional discount scheme. In order to resolve the case, the toy manufacturer (...)

The French Competition Authority accepts a building games company’s commitments to correct price discrimination against online retailers (Lego)
University Paris Saclay
While the rules on price discrimination lack clarity, the French competition Authority has missed the opportunity to do its part. In order to compensate for the price increase of its products, the Lego France company created a discount scheme for the benefit of its resellers. The discount (...)

The US FTC charges two pharmaceutical companies for preventing competition in the national market for oxymorphone (Endo / Impax)
US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) (Washington)
FTC Again Charges Endo and Impax with Illegally Preventing Competition in U.S. Market for Oxymorphone ER* The FTC is suing Endo Pharmaceuticals Inc., Endo International plc, Impax Laboratories, LLC, and Impax’s owner, Amneal Pharmaceuticals, Inc., alleging that a 2017 agreement between Endo and (...)

The UK Competition Authority publishes new research on algorithms showing how they can reduce competition in digital markets
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
CMA lifts the lid on impact of algorithms* The CMA has published new research on algorithms, showing how they can reduce competition in digital markets and harm consumers if they are misused. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is now seeking evidence from academics and industry (...)

The German Competition Authority fines gully tops and manhole covers manifacturers for agreements on prices and rebates (MeierGuss Sales & Logistics / KG)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Manufacturers of manhole covers and gully tops fined for price-fixing* The Bundeskartellamt has imposed fines totalling around 6 million euros on two manufacturers of manhole covers and gully tops and their representatives for agreements on prices and rebates and an agreement to carve up two (...)

The German Competition Authority fines manufacturers of manhole covers €6 million for price-fixing (MeierGuss Sales & Logistics / KG)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
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Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 14 January 2021, the German Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) announced that it had fined two manufacturers of manhole covers approximately € 6 million for price-fixing and coordinating their respective offers for two large contracts. The companies manufacture products such as manhole covers and (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority fines six companies for altering the solid fuels trading market (FISL / Grafitos / Toro)
Spanish Competition Authority (Madrid)
The CNMC fines six companies for altering the solid fuels trading market* The sanctioned companies exchanged sensitive commercial information, allocated customers and fixed prices through various agreements.These practices, which are highly detrimental to competition and prohibited by law, took (...)

The Canadian Competition Authority closes investigation of two daily newspapers for concluding agreements (Postmedia / Torstar)
Canadian Competition Bureau (Gatineau)
Competition Bureau closes investigation of Postmedia and Torstar* The Competition Bureau announced today that it has closed its investigation into allegations that Postmedia and Torstar reached an agreement contrary to the conspiracy provisions of the Competition Act. The Bureau began (...)

The Arbitration Court of Moscow upholds the Competition Authority’s decision to fine three construction companies involved in a cartel for price-fixing (Mostootryad-99 / Dorstroyotrayd-99 / SPA Dormost)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
DAGESTAN ROAD CARTEL WILL PAY A FINE OF 170 MILLION RUBLES* The arbitration court of Moscow upheld the decision of the FAS Russia on bringing to administrative responsibility Mostootryad-99 JSC, Dorstroyotrayd-99 LLC and scientific production association (SPA) Dormost LLC. It should be (...)

The German Competition Authority fines five aluminium forging companies and ten employees responsible for engaging in illegal anti-competitive agreements (Otto Fuchs / Leiber / Emmingen-Liptingen..)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt - Cartel Prosecution* Fines imposed on aluminium forging companies on account of anti-competitive agreements Bonn, 23 December 2020: The Bundeskartellamt has imposed fines totalling approximately 175 million euros on five aluminium forging companies and ten employees (...)

The German Competition Authority fines five aluminium forging companies and ten responsible individuals for price fixing (Otto Fuchs / Leiber / Emmingen-Liptingen)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
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Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 23 December 2020, the German Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) announced that it had fined five aluminium forging companies and ten responsible individuals a total amount of approximately € 175 million for price fixing between April 2006 and April 2018. Automotive and motorcycle manufacturers and (...)

The Portuguese Competition Authority imposes fines on six large retail food chains and two suppliers for price fixing, harmful to consumers (Modelo Continente / Pingo Doce / Auchan)
Portuguese Competition Authority (Lisbon)
The AdC imposed fines on six large retail food chains and two suppliers for price fixing, harmful to consumers* The decisions The AdC – Autoridade da Concorrência imposed a total fine of circa €304 million on six large food retail chains, two beverage suppliers, a board member and a director (...)

The Turkish Competition Authority fines auto expertise services providers for price fixing and supply cartel (Auto / Çözüm / Dyno Max...)
ACTECON (Istanbul)
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ACTECON (Istanbul)
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ACTECON (Istanbul)
On 17 December 2020, the Turkish Competition Authority (“TCA”) announced, on its website, the reasoned decision as a result of its investigation against certain auto expertise services providers in a province of Turkey (i.e. Gaziantep), unveiling a price fixing and supply cartel among the (...)

The Australian Competition Authority fines and convicts a former general manager of a national steel producing company for obstructing a cartel investigation (BlueScope Steel)
Ashurst (Sydney)
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Ashurst (Sydney)
In December 2020, Jason Ellis, a former general manager of sales and marketing at BlueScope Steel Limited ("BlueScope"), was sentenced to eight months’ imprisonment (suspended) and ordered to pay a A$10,000 fine, for inciting the obstruction of an investigation by the Australian Competition and (...)

The Norwegian Competition Authority warns in a statement of objections that it is considering imposing fines on three grocery store chains for collusion leading to higher prices (Norgesgruppen / Coop / Rema 1000)
Norwegian Competition Authority
Anticompetitive practices may have led to higher grocery prices* The Norwegian Competition Authority warns in a Statement of Objections that it is considering imposing fines totaling 21 billion NOK on Norgesgruppen, Coop and Rema 1000. The Authority’s preliminary assessment is that the three (...)

The US DoJ indicts former owner of healthcare staffing company for wage fixing (Neeraj Jindal)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Former Owner of Health Care Staffing Company Indicted for Wage Fixing* Antitrust Division Remains Committed to Prosecuting Collusion in Labor Markets A federal grand jury returned an indictment charging Neeraj Jindal, the former owner of a therapist staffing company, for participating in a (...)

The US DoJ brings criminal charges for wage fixing on therapist staffing companies (Neeraj Jindal)
Jones Day (Washington DC)
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Jones Day (San Francisco)
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Jones Day (Houston)
The Department of Justice Antitrust Division ("DOJ") has indicted a Texas businessman for conspiring with competitors to fix employee wages in violation of the Sherman Act. This action challenges particularly blatant conduct, but is consistent with recent attention to antitrust in employment (...)

The Singaporean Competition Authority reduces fines by 20% to 70% imposed on distributors of fresh chicken engaged in a cartel (Gold Chic Poultry / Hua Kun / Toh Thye San Farm / Lee Say...)
Ashurst (Singapore)
On 4 December 2020, Singapore’s Competition Appeal Board (CAB) reduced penalties imposed on eight out of thirteen distributors of fresh chicken found to have engaged in cartel conduct in September 2018. The reduction in fines ranged from 20% to 70%. What you need to know - key takeaways While (...)

The French Competition Authority fines national tea producer for imposing sales prices on the retailers selling its products online (Dammann Frères)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence hands out a fine to Dammann Frères tea for imposing sales prices on the retailers selling its products online* Background Following an investigation report from the Directorate General for Competition Policy, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Control (DGCCRF), the (...)

The Portuguese Competition Authority fines two telecommunications companies for entering into a cartel (MEO / NOWO)
Portuguese Competition Authority (Lisbon)
AdC imposes fine of 84 million euros to MEO for cartel with NOWO* The AdC - Portuguese Competition Authority imposed a fine of 84 million euros on the telecommunication operator MEO for market sharing and price fixing of mobile and fixed telecommunications services with NOWO – Communications. (...)

The French Competition Authority fines high-end tea producer for restricting its retailers’ ability to set online prices (Dammann Frères)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
In a decision published on 3 December 2020, the French Competition Authority (“FCA”) fined tea producer Dammann Frères (“Dammann”) € 226,000 for violating Article 101 TFEU and its French law equivalent by restricting the ability of its retailers to set online prices. The FCA found that Dammann (...)

The Australian Competition Authority charges a pharmaceutical ingredient company and its former director for leading a criminal cartel (Alkaloids / Christopher Kenneth Joyce)
Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (Canberra)
Criminal cartel charges laid against pharmaceutical ingredient company and its former export manager.* Alkaloids of Australia Pty Ltd and its former export manager, Christopher Kenneth Joyce, have each been charged with 33 criminal cartel offences, contrary to the Competition and Consumer Act (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority issues warnings about the consequences of a possible price increase resulting from agreements between competitors in the food production sector
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE warns several associations of tortilla producers about the consequences of a possible price increase if this is the result of an agreement between competitors* The price established by each tortilla producer must be an individual determination COFECE’s Investigative Authority could (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Authority reduces fines it imposed on cinema companies for forming cartel as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic (Theatrical Film Distribution / NCG Distribution / Forum Cinemas) Free
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
As a result of Covid-19 Pandemic, Lithuanian Competition council reduces fines imposed on cinema companies that formed cartel* The Lithuanian competition authority Konkurencijos taryba has found that the film distributor Theatrical Film Distribution and the firms NCG Distribution and Forum (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Authority reduces fine for price fixing due to the effects of COVID-19 pandemic (Theatrical Film Distribution / NCG Distribution / Forum Cinemas) Free
Commonwealth Secretariat (London)
It was a classic case of a price fixing cartel brought to the competition authority’s attention by a potential victim. The Lithuanian competition authority, Konkurencijos taryba, or Competition Council of the Republic of Lithuania (‘Competition Council’), announced on 25 November 2020 that its (...)

The Polish Competition Authority conducts dawn raids and initiates explanatory proceedings against pharmaceutical wholesalers for allegations of exchange of information and price fixing (Neuca Spółka Akcyjna / Przedsiębiorstwo Dystrybucji Farmaceutycznej Slawex / Farmacol Serwis / Farmacol Logistyka)
Polish Competition Authority (Warsaw)
Do pharmaceutical wholesalers increase drug prices by exchanging information?* Could unfair market practices, resulting in higher drug prices and restriction of competition, be facilitated by the IT systems used by pharmaceutical wholesalers? President of UOKiK Tomasz Chróstny has initiated (...)

The US DoJ announces that the president of a company pleaded guilty to rigging bids in the commercial flooring market (Delmar E. Church Jr.)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
President of Commercial Flooring Company Pleads Guilty to Rigging Bids in Violation of Federal Antitrust Laws* Delmar E. Church Jr., the president and one of the principal owners of a Chicago-area commercial flooring company, pleaded guilty for his role in a conspiracy to rig bids and fix (...)

The Luxembourg Competition Authority fines food company and 3 supermarkets €3.3 million for resale price maintenance (Bahlsen / Auchan / Cactus / Delhaize)
Luxembourg Competition Council (Liège)
The Luxembourg Competition Council fines Bahlsen and the supermarkets Auchan, Cactus and Delhaize of €3.3 million* In three decisions dated 18 November 2020, the Competition Council fines Bahlsen and the supermarkets Auchan, Cactus and Delhaize of €3.3 million for resale price maintenance of (...)

The Luxembourg Competition Authority imposes its highest ever fine for retail price maintenance practices (Bahlsen / Auchan / Cactus / Delhaize)
Arendt & Medernach (Luxembourg)
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Arendt & Medernach (Luxembourg)
I. Introduction On 18 November 2020, at the end of an eventful 2020, the Luxembourg Competition Council announced the adoption of “the most important decision that the authority has ever taken, in terms of content and the amount of the penalty”. Indeed, the imposition of an aggregate fine of (...)

The Portuguese Competition Authority issues a statement of objections to the association of land surveyors for price fixing (National Association of Land Surveyors)
Portuguese Competition Authority (Lisbon)
AdC issues Statement of Objections to National Association of Land Surveyors for price fixing* The AdC – Portuguese Competition Authority issued a Statement of Objections (SO) to the National Association of Land Surveyors (ANT – in Portuguese), for price fixing of the services of land surveying. (...)

The Slovenian Competition Authority opens a procedure against four gas companies for prohibited restrictive agreement and concerted practice (Butan plin / INA Slovenija / Istrabenz plini / Plinarna Maribor)
Slovenian Competition Authority (Ljubljana)
The Agency has commenced a procedure in order to establish a prohibited restrictive agreement or concerted practice between the undertakings Butan plin, d.d., Ljubljana, INA Slovenija, d.o.o., Istrabenz plini d.o.o. and Plinarna Maribor d.o.o.* The Slovenian Competition Protection Agency, (...)

The Polish Competition Authority fines a music manufacturer for setting minimum online resale prices (Yamaha Music Europe)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
According to a press release of 5 November 2020, the Polish Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (the “UOKIK”) imposed a fine of PLN 511,806.92 (approximately € 114,000) on musical equipment manufacturer Yamaha for setting minimum prices at which its products could be sold by distributors (...)

The Hellenic Competition Authority releases a statement of objections in the gas appliances sector against a company for alleged abuse of dominant position as well as agreements concluded with its wholesalers and distributors (DIMKA / STAMATOULIS)
Hellenic Competition Authority (Athens)
Subject: Statement of Objections in relation to alleged infringements of Articles 1 and 2 of Law 3959/2011 and Articles 101 and 102 TFEU in the Greek market for general purpose gas appliances by DIMKA SA, following a complaint by STAMATOULIS SA as well as an ex officio investigation of the (...)

The Hong Kong Competition Authority welcomes the Competition Tribunal’s judgment against an IT cartel for price fixing in the first case where the liability and relief portions of the proceedings have been resolved by settlement (Quantr / Cheung Man Kit / Nintex)
Hong Kong Competition Commission
Competition Commission welcomes judgment in IT cartel conduct case* The Competition Commission (Commission) welcomes the judgment handed down by the Competition Tribunal (Tribunal) today (3 November) in proceedings involving the exchange of competitively sensitive information in the IT sector. (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority opens investigation into possible price fixing of sunscreen products (ISDIN)
Spanish Competition Authority (Madrid)
The CNMC opens a formal investigation into possible anticompetitive practices of ISDIN, S.A* The potential illegal conduct allegedly consists of fixing resale prices online, at least for sunscreen products. Currently, the CNMC assesses potential competition restrictions imposed by producers (...)

The Austrian Competition Authority files an application to fine four construction companies for price fixing, market division, and other anti-competitive conduct
Austrian Competition Authority (Vienna)
AFCA files application to fine four construction companies for price fixing, market division and other anti-competitive conduct* The alleged infringements include price fixing, market divison and the exchange of competitively sensitive information. On 29 October 2020 the Austrian Federal (...)

The UK Competition Authority and Serious Fraud Office sign a memorandum of understanding allowing the two regulators to investigate and prosecute individuals in criminal cartel cases
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 22 October 2020, the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA”) and the UK’s Serious Fraud Office (“SFO”) signed a memorandum of understanding (“MoU”) allowing the two regulators to investigate and/or prosecute individuals in criminal cartel cases. Under UK competition law the most serious (...)

The Russian Ninth Arbitration Court of Appeal confirms the Competition Authority’s fines for a construction cartel in the Karachay-Cherkessian Republic (Chance / Kubanskoye / Karachaevskoye / Yugelektromontazh / Invest)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
Appeal Confirmed Legality of the Decision Against the Cartel in Karachai-Cherkessia* The tenders for the construction of roads, buildings and facilities in the republic were held in violation of the antimonopoly law. Fines for companies exceeded 106 million rubles It should be reminded that (...)

The Russian Republic of Khakassia’s Abakan City Court convicts members of a medical equipment cartel to imprisonment up to 16 years (Administration of Head of Republic of Khakassia)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
Andrey Tenishev: Cartel Members Convicted in the Republic of Khakassia* Court imposed imprisonment up to 16 years to participants of anticompetitive agreements for theft and bribes It should be reminded that in 2018 the FAS Russia recognized a number of companies violated the Law on (...)

The Norwegian Competition Authority releases a survey of purchase prices faced by grocery chains in 2018 and 2019 which confirms 2017 findings of significant differences in purchasing conditions in certain cases
Norwegian Competition Authority
New survey of purchase prices confirms significant differences* The Norwegian Competition Authority has examined the differences in purchase prices that Norwegian grocery chains faced in 2018 and 2019. The results confirm last years’ findings, based on data from 2017, that there are large (...)

The US District Court for the District of Colorado indicts six additional individuals on charges of price fixing and bid rigging in ongoing broiler chicken investigation (Timothy Mulrenin / William Kantola / Jimmie Little / William Lovette / Gary Roberts / Rickie Blake)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Six Additional Individuals Indicted On Antitrust Charges In Ongoing Broiler Chicken Investigation* A federal grand jury in the U.S. District Court in Denver, Colorado, returned a superseding indictment charging six additional defendants for their roles in a previously indicted conspiracy to (...)

The EU Commission sends a statement of objections to Italian agricultural cooperative for participation in canned vegetable cartel (Conserve Italia)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission sends Statement of Objections to Conserve Italia for participation in canned vegetables cartel* The European Commission has informed Conserve Italia Soc. coop. Agricola and its subsidiary Conserves France SA (together referred to as Conserve Italia) of its preliminary (...)

The EU General Court annuls partially the Commission’s decision ordering dawn raids on the premises of French supermarkets and their joint purchasing alliance (Casino, Guichard-Perrachon / Achats Marchandises Casino) (Intermarché Casino Achats) (Les Mousquetaires / ITM Entreprises)
Portolano Cavallo (Milan)
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Portolano Cavallo (Milan)
On October 5, 2020, the General Court of the European Union partially annulled decisions of the European Commission ordering dawn raids on the premises of French supermarkets Casino and Intermarché and their joint purchasing alliance INCA Auchats (see cases T-249/17, T-254/17 and T-255/17). The (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority investigates possible absolute monopolistic practices in the market for waterproofing products
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE investigates possible absolute monopolistic practices in the market for waterproofing products* The Investigative Authority has evidence to suggest anticompetitive conducts in said market. This investigation must not be understood as a prejudgment, but as an action by the authority to (...)

The Bulgarian Competition Authority addresses allegations for participation in an agreement for fixing the resale price of child care and mother care products (Smart SM)
Bulgarian Commission for the Protection of Competition (Sofia)
CPC has addressed allegations for committed infringement of Art. 15, par. 1 of the LPC to Smart SM OOD* By Statement No. 732/17.09.2020 delivered under case No. КЗК-359/2018 on the grounds of art. 74, par. 1, item 3 of the LPC, the CPC has addressed allegations for committed infringement of Art. (...)

The Austrian Cartel Court finds musical instrument manufacturer guilty of price fixing (Roland Germany)
Austrian Competition Authority (Vienna)
Cartel Court finds Roland Germany GmbH guilty of price fixing* The company cooperated with the AFCA within the leniency programme On 24 September 2020 the Cartel Court, acting on the Austrian Federal Competition Authority’s (AFCA) application of 2 June 2020, found Roland Germany GmbH to have (...)

The German Federal Court of Justice rules on a damages claim following a Commission decision sanctioning a cartel of truck manufacturers (Trucks cartel)
Ashurst (Munich)
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Ashurst (Frankfurt)
In a decision of 23 September 2020, published early January 2021, the German Federal Court of Justice ("BGH") rejected a follow-on damages claim filed against Daimler in relation to the European Commission’s ("Commission") Trucks decision. This is the first time that the highest German civil (...)

The French Competition Authority sanctions three professional organisations for anticompetitive practices in the wine sector (AVA / GPNVA / CIVA)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Alsace wines: The Autorité sanctions three professional organisations for anticompetitive practices* Following evidence and documents sent by the French Directorate General for Competition Policy, Consumer Affairs and Fraud Control (DGCCRF), the Autorité sanctioned two trade associations, the (...)

The US DoJ announces that a former currency trader at a major multinational bank is sentenced to jail and required to pay a fine for participating in price fixing and bid rigging
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Former Foreign Exchange Trader Sentenced To Prison For Price Fixing And Bid Rigging* Akshay Aiyer, a former currency trader at a major multinational bank, was sentenced to serve eight months in jail and ordered to pay a $150,000 criminal fine for his participation in an antitrust conspiracy to (...)

The Irish Competition Authority issues preliminary findings to organisations under investigation in the private motor insurance sector (AIG Europe / Allianz / AXA / Aviva / FBD / Brokers Ireland / AA)
Irish Competition Authority (Dublin)
CCPC issues preliminary findings to organisations under investigation in the private motor insurance sector* The Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) has today issued preliminary findings to five insurers, an insurance industry trade association and an insurance broker: AIG (...)

The Russian Competition Authority detects a collusion for 1.5 billion rubles in the coal supply market (PJSC TGC-2 / JSC Arhoblenergo / LLC TEC)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
FAS Russia detected collusion for 1.5 billion rubles in the coal supply market* The Commission of the FAS Russia recognized PJSC TGC-2, JSC Arhoblenergo and LLC TEC as violating the antimonopoly legislatio. The companies restricted competition by entering into agreements with each other and (...)

The Polish Competition Authority fines six manufacturers of wooden railroad sleepers for bid rigging (Track Tec / Kolejowe Zakłady Nawierzchniowe / Sleeper Treatment Plant in Czeremcha / Sleeper Treatment Plant in Koźmin Wielkopolski / ThyssenKrupp / Trade-Port)
Polish Competition Authority (Warsaw)
Bid rigging - decision of the president of UOKiK* President of UOKiK Tomasz Chróstny imposed a fine of over PLN 13.5 million on six manufacturers of wooden railroad sleepers. The entrepreneurs entered into a bid rigging for the delivery of products for PKP PLK. The following entrepreneurs (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority fines 33 school transport companies and one association for creating a school transport cartel (School transport cartel / Asociación Navarra de Empresarios del Transporte por Carretera y Logística)
Spanish Competition Authority (Madrid)
The CNMC fines 33 school transport companies and one association for creating a school transport cartel in Navarre* The companies conspired to share the school transport by zones and deceive the School Board of the Government of Navarre, driving up the prices of the service for 8 years. The (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority fines 33 school transport companies and one association with €3.36 million for creating a school transport cartel (School transport cartel / Asociación Navarra de Empresarios del Transporte por Carretera y Logística)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
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Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 9 September 2020, the Spanish Competition Authority (“CNMC”) imposed fines totalling € 3.36 million on 33 school transport companies and fined one association € 15,000 for their involvement in a bid-rigging cartel in the school transport sector in the region of Navarre from 1 December 2013 until (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority fines several companies and natural persons for agreeing on retail gasoline prices (Gasmart / Rendichicas / Appro / Magigas / Eco...)
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE sanctions several companies and natural persons for agreeing retail gasoline prices in Tijuana and Mexicali, in Baja California* The Board of Commissioners imposed fines totaling 51 million Mexican pesos to companies of the economic interest groups: Gasmart, Rendichicas, Appro, Magigas (...)

The Hellenic Competition Authority launches an investigation on health and hospital equipment during COVID-19 pandemic Free
Hellenic Competition Authority (Athens)
The interim results of HCC’s investigations on health and hospital equipment during covid-19 pandemic* Subject: Investigation by the Hellenic Competition Commission in the markets of a) healthcare materials, b) other appropriate means of individual or collective protection against the spread of (...)

The Auckland High Court fines $4 million real estate agencies for price-fixing (Lodge / Monarch)
New Zealand Commerce Commission (Wellington)
Hamilton real estate agencies to pay $4 million for price fixing* The Auckland High Court has ordered Hamilton-based Lodge Real Estate Limited (Lodge) to pay $2.1 million and Monarch Real Estate Limited (Monarch) to pay $1.9 million for engaging in price-fixing in breach of the Commerce Act. (...)

The US District Court for the Southern District of Georgia indicts ready-mix concrete company and individuals for price-fixing and bid-rigging (Evans Concrete)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Ready-Mix Concrete Company And Individuals Indicted For Fixing Prices And Rigging Bids In Violation Of Antitrust Laws* A federal grand jury returned an indictment against one company and four individuals for their roles in a long-running conspiracy to fix prices, rig bids, and allocate markets (...)

The Russian Competition Authority finds two companies active in the coal and steel industry to have entered into a cartel agreement on the exchange trading of petroleum products (Solid-Commodity Markets / A-Oil)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
Russia’s First Antimonopoly Cartel Case On The Stock Exchange* Solid-Commodity Markets JSC and A-OIL LLC were found guilty of entering into a cartel agreement on the exchange trading of petroleum products in 2018 The significance of the case for antimonopoly and judicial practice was presented (...)

The Russian Competition Authority finds that six companies engaged in a cartel by setting and maintaining high prices in the market of orthopaedic products (Trives Trade / MedExpert / Optomed / Maltri / Orto)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
Fas Russia Found Cartel In The Market Of Orthopedic Products* By entering into anticompetitive agreement, six companies wholesaling orthopedic products set and maintained the highest price of products sold The FAS Russia found Trives Trade LLC, MedExpert LLC, Optomed LLC, Maltri LLC, ORTO LLC (...)

The UK Supreme Court hands down a judgement between a software and a telecommunication company, providing answers on questions concerning the English Courts’ approach to FRAND disputes (Unwired Planet / Huawei)
Hogan Lovells (London)
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Hogan Lovells (London)
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Hogan Lovells (London)
The UK Supreme Court has handed down its long-awaited judgment in the Unwired Planet v Huawei and Conversant v Huawei & ZTE proceedings ([2020] UKSC 37), providing answers on several key questions concerning the English Courts’ approach to FRAND disputes. In a unanimous judgment, the (...)

The UK Supreme Court confirms that English courts may set the terms of global licences to portfolios of standard essential patents (Unwired Planet / Huawei)
Bristows (London)
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Bristows (London)
English courts given green light to set terms of global FRAND licences* On 26 August 2020, the UK Supreme Court (UKSC) gave its eagerly awaited judgment in Unwired Planet v Huawei and Conversant v Huawei & ZTE. In a unanimous policy-driven decision, the Court dismissed the appeals brought (...)

The UK Supreme Court confirms that it is possible to set global FRAND rates and global licences to portfolios of standard-essential patents (Unwired Planet / Huawei)
Baker Botts (Brussels)
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Baker Botts (Brussels)
The U.K. Supreme Court’s 26 August ruling on standard-essential patents (SEPs) is the latest in a series of recent decisions that are likely to have a profound effect on FRAND license negotiations across the globe, in particular for the next generation 4G and 5G mobile telecommunication (...)

The US DoJ charges a seventh generic drug manufacturer in ongoing criminal price-fixing investigation (Teva Pharmaceuticals)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Seventh Generic Drug Manufacturer Is Charged In Ongoing Criminal Antitrust Investigation* Consumers Were Allegedly Overcharged at Least $350 Million Teva Pharmaceuticals USA Inc. (Teva) has been charged with conspiring to fix prices, rig bids, and allocate customers for generic drugs, the (...)

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)
French Competition Authority (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 New Zealand Competition Authority reaches a settlement in equine air freight price-fixing proceeding (IRT Partnership)
New Zealand Commerce Commission (Wellington)
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 US House Subcommittee on Antitrust, Commercial and Administrative Law holds hearings of a multinational online retail platform for antitrust claims (Amazon / Google / Apple / Facebook)
Bona Law (Detroit)
Big Tech Hearings: What Do They Tell Us About Amazon and Antitrust?* The U.S. House Antitrust Subcommittee of the Judiciary Committee’s recent hearings into “big tech” and antitrust were “must see TV” for antitrust attorneys. Over the five hours of testimony, many interesting questions were asked (...)

The US DoJ charges sixth pharmaceutical company for fixing prices, allocating customers a bid-rigging in the ongoing investigation into the generic pharmaceutical industry (Taro Pharmaceuticals)
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 Singapore Competition Authority issues a guidance note on collaborations between competitors in response to the COVID-19 pandemic Free
Bird & Bird (Singapore)
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Bird & Bird (Singapore)
COVID-19 has presented significant economic challenges to businesses across all industries, disrupting daily operations and global supply chains. During this time, temporary collaborations among competitors have become an important means of sustaining or improving the supply of essential goods (...)

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 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 EU Commission fines ethylene purchasers for having colluded and exchanged information on purchase prices (Orbia / Clariant / Celanese / Westlake)
Ashurst (Brussels)
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Ashurst (London)
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Ashurst (London)
Fines for ethylene purchasing cartel On 14 July 2020, the European Commission ("Commission") fined ethylene purchasers Orbia, Clariant and Celanese EUR 260 million for having colluded and exchanged information on purchase prices on the ethylene merchant market with a fourth participant, (...)

The EU Commission fines ethylene purchasers €260 million in cartel settlement (Orbia / Clariant / Calanese / Westlake)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 14 July 2020, the European Commission (the “Commission”) announced that it had adopted a decision fin‐ ing three ethylene purchasers a total of € 260,443,000. The companies concerned namely, Orbia (Mexico), Clari‐ ant (Switzerland), Calanese (United States) and Westlake (United States), were (...)

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 Guernsey Competition Authority provisionally finds that a medical specialist imposed excessively broad restraints of trade restrictions on its ex-consultants (Medical Specialist Group)
Guernsey Competition Authority
Competition Authority issues case against Medical Specialist Group* The Guernsey Competition and Regulatory Authority (GCRA) has provisionally found that the Medical Specialist Group (MSG) has broken Guernsey competition law by imposing excessively broad restraint of trade restrictions on its (...)

The Indian Competition Authority identifies cartels but does not impose any penalty amidst the COVID-19 pandemic (South Eastern Railway / Hindustan Composites) Free
Nirma University (Ahmedabad)
The Indian antitrust watchdog has changed its modus operandi in the ensuing pandemic, by taking a softer stance on cartel-like behaviour in the Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) sector. In July 2020, the Competition Commission of India (‘Commission’), while proving the existence of a (...)

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 England & Wales High Court grants the first application for a competition disqualification order to come to trial by the UK Competition Authority against an estate agency director guilty of cartel participation by knowing of it and not acting to stop it (Michael Martin)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
Court orders disqualification of estate agent cartel director* In the first contested case of its kind, the CMA has secured the disqualification of a director whose Somerset estate agency breached competition law. Following a four day trial last month, Mr Michael Martin was today disqualified (...)

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 UK Competition Authority fines £1.2 million healthcare providers and consultants for price fixing (Spire Healthcare)
Ashurst (London)
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Ashurst (London)
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Ashurst (London)
Spire Healthcare, a private healthcare provider, and six consultant ophthalmologists have been fined for their roles in facilitating and arranging to fix the price of initial consultations between different consultants at a Spire hospital in the north of England. Whilst individual consultants (...)

The UK Competition Authority fines private hospital and consultant eye doctors £1.2 million for price-fixing (Spire Healthcare)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
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Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 1 July 2020, the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA”) fined the private hospital owner Spire Healthcare Limited and its parent Spire Healthcare Group Plc (together “Spire”) £1.2 million for instigating and facilitating a price-fixing cartel with seven consultant ophthalmologists based in (...)

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 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 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 Paris Court of Appeal hands down an important judgement in a follow-on damages claims for the consequences of abusive practices in the telecommunications market (Orange / Digicel)
University Paris II Panthéon‑Assas
On June 17, 2020, the Paris Court of Appeal handed down an important decision in the Digicel / Orange case. Digicel has indeed initiated an action to be compensated for the consequences of the abusive practices implemented in the Antilles-Guyana zone by Orange-Caraïbe and Orange between 2000 and (...)

The US District Court for the Northern District of California announces a $100,000 fine and sentences 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)
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Hogan Lovells (Washington)
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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 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 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 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 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 (Wellington)
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)
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Trilegal (Mumbai)
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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 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 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)
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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 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 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)
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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 Indian Competition Appellate Tribunal gives a decisive ruling for appeals of orders of the Indian Competition Authority (Maj. Pankaj Rai)
Gujarat National Law University (Gandhinagar)
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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 Lithuanian Competition Authority warns travel organizers not to interfere with travel agencies’ pricing or discount decisions
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
Konkurencijos taryba warns travel agencies to refrain from anti-competitive behaviour* The Lithuanian competition authority Konkurencijos taryba responded to information on social media and warned travel agencies that their actions may be viewed as anti-competitive when some of them requested (...)

The US DoJ fines generic pharmaceutical company $24.1million for fixing price of widely used cholesterol medication and files for deferred prosecution agreement (Apotex)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Generic Pharmaceutical Company Admits to Fixing Price of Widely Used Cholesterol Medication* Apotex Corp. Agrees to Pay a $24.1 Million Criminal Penalty Apotex Corp., a generic pharmaceutical company headquartered in Florida, was charged with fixing the price of the generic drug pravastatin, (...)

The Hong Kong Competition Authority welcomes the Competition Tribunal’s first judgment on its decision regarding pecuniary penalties taken against ten construction and engineering undertakings engaged in a cartel
Hong Kong Competition Commission
Competition Commission welcomes first judgment on pecuniary penalties in Hong Kong competition law regime* The Competition Commission (Commission) welcomes the judgment (Judgment) handed down by the Competition Tribunal (Tribunal) today (29 April) on pecuniary penalties against ten respondent (...)

The Turkish Competition Authority investigates RPM allegations against leading energy drink company and decides to close its in-depth investigation without imposing any administrative fines (Red Bull)
ACTECON (Istanbul)
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ACTECON (Istanbul)
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ACTECON (Istanbul)
In 21 April 2020, the Turkish Competition Authority (“TCA”) published its reasoned decision on resale price maintenance and de facto exclusivity conducts focusing on the practices carried by Red Bull Gıda Dağıtım ve Pazarlama Tic. Ltd. Şti. (“Red Bull”) Resale price maintenance and exclusionary (...)

The US FTC adds 6 State Attorneys General as co-complainants in suit against anticompetitive scheme to protect list-price increase of more than 4,000 percent for life-saving drug Daraprim (Vyera Pharmaceuticals / Martin Shkreli / Phoenixus / Kevin Mulleady)
US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) (Washington)
Six More States Join FTC and NY Attorney General’s Case Against Vyera Pharmaceuticals, Martin Shkreli, and Other Defendants* Defendants engaged in anticompetitive scheme to protect list-price increase of more than 4,000 percent for life-saving drug Daraprim The Federal Trade Commission has (...)

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 Chilean Supreme Court upholds a landmark decision by the Competition Tribunal condemning the country’s three largest supermarkets for conspiracy in fixing minimum resale prices of poultry (Walmart / Cencosud / SMU)
Garrigues (Provincia)
The Chilean Supreme Court recently upheld a landmark decision by the Competition Tribunal (“TDLC”) in Fiscalía Nacional Económica en contra de Cencosud S.A. y otras, Rol C-304-2016, condemning the country’s three largest supermarkets chains for having engaged in a conspiracy to fix minimum resale (...)

The EU Court of Justice emphasises the need for a case and context-specific evaluation of ’by object’ restrictions and provides guidance on what sort of evidence is relevant, in a multilateral interchange fee credit card transaction (Budapest Bank)
Hogan Lovells (Munich/Frankfurt)
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Hogan Lovells (Munich/Frankfurt)
I. Introduction On 2 April 2020, the Court of Justice of the European Union ("CJEU") delivered its judgment in Budapest Bank, another key ruling on the assessment of 'by object' restrictions of competition within the meaning of Article 101(1) TFEU. With this judgment, the (...)

The EU Court of Justice ascertains whether the multilateral interchange fee set by the banks for credit card transactions with a merchant pursued no objective other than a simple price increase (Budapest Bank)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 2 April 2020, the Court of Justice of the European Union (the “Court of Justice”) delivered a preliminary ruling in which it provided clarifications and guidance to the Kúria (Supreme Court of Hungary) on the distinction between restrictions of competition “by object” and “by effect” under (...)

The EU Court of Justice finds, following a preliminary reference, that certain interchange fees imposed by a bank payable on cross-border card transaction within the EEA are anticompetitive (Budapest Bank)
Hausfeld (London)
On 2 April, the European Court of Justice (“CJEU”) issued a judgment arising from a preliminary reference from the Hungarian Supreme Court concerning a 2009 decision by the Hungarian Competition Authority against Visa Europe Ltd (“Visa”), MasterCard Europe SA (“MasterCard”) and a number of (...)

The Latvian Competition Authority detects competition deformation implemented in procurements by a local government and its capital company (DAKO / RUVAR)
Konkurences padome (Riga)
The Competition Council detects competition deformation implemented in procurements by a local government and its capital company* The Competition Council of Latvia (the CC) has closed the investigation case regarding activities by two companies – SIA “DAKO” and SIA “RUVAR” – in procurements on (...)

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)
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Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Brussels)
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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 Italian Competition Authority launches an investigation and opens sub-proceedings for potentially ordering interim measures against two companies providing products for the prevention of contagion of the COVID-19 to consumers resident in Europe (ContextLogic / Wish) Free
Italian Competition Authority (Rome)
PS11734 - ANTITRUST: PROCEEDINGS INITIATED AGAINST THE WWW.WISH.COM PLATFORM* On 31 March, the Authority launched an investigation and opened a sub-proceedings for ordering, if necessary, an interim measure against ContextLogic Inc, the US company that owns the www.wish.com platform and its (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority warns the National Chamber of the Sugar and Alcohol Industry that increases in alcohol prices may be caused by anticompetitive agreements between economic agents which is especially problematic with increased demand for pure alcohol products by healthcare providers during the COVID-19 pandemic Free
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE warns the National Chamber of the Sugar and Alcohol Industry that increases in alcohol prices, alcohol products and other inputs for its production, may be caused by agreements between economic agents* Prices established by each producer of alcohol and the inputs required for its (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Authority ends its investigation into alleged anti-competitive agreement in the household manufacturing sector (Tikkurila, Tikkurila/Kesko Senukai Lithuania/Kesko Senukai Digital/ Ermitažas/DAW Lietuva/Topcolor)
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
KONKURENCIJOS TARYBA HASN’T SPOTTED ANTI-COMPETITIVE AGREEMENTS BETWEEN CONSTRUCTION, REPAIR AND HOUSEHOLD PRODUCT MANUFACTURERS AND SELLERS* Konkurencijos taryba has terminated investigation into the alleged anti-competitive agreement among 7 Lithuanian and Latvian companies engaged in the (...)

The Hong Kong Competition Authority takes textbook cartel case to Competition Tribunal for price-fixing during the COVID-19 pandemic (T.H. Lee Book Company / Commercial Press / Sino United Publishing / Mr. Hui) Free
Hong Kong Competition Commission
Competition Commission takes Textbook cartel case to Competition Tribunal* The Competition Commission (“Commission”) has today commenced proceedings in the Competition Tribunal (“Tribunal”) against three companies, namely T.H. Lee Book Company Limited, Commercial Press (Hong Kong) Limited and Sino (...)

The Canadian Competition Authority is scrutinising competition law compliance and companies taking advantage of consumers by engaging in price fixing and misleading claims about products during the COVID-19 outbreak Free
Cassels Brock (Toronto)
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Cassels Brock (Toronto)
The Competition Bureau is watching for evidence of companies taking advantage of consumers by making false or misleading claims about a product’s ability to combat COVID-19 or engaging in price fixing, the Commissioner of Competition warned in a recent statement. The Commissioner added that (...)

The UK Government and the Competition Authority adopt two recent measures against shortages and high prices during the COVID-19 outbreak Free
Greenberg Traurig (London)
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Greenberg Traurig (London)
The rapid spread of COVID-19 in the United Kingdom and the measures being implemented to counter the disease have resulted in an unprecedented surge of consumer demand for groceries and other essential supplies. Safeguarding consumers against shortages and high prices is at the heart of two (...)

The Turkish Competition Authority fines ready mix concrete producers for engaging in horizontal infringements and cartels (Coşkunlar / Irgatoğlu / Sorgun Emek / Tamer...)
Erdem & Erdem (Istanbul)
Introduction The Turkish Competition Board’s (“Board”) recent decision dated 19.03.2020 and numbered 20-15/215-107 regarding the ready mix concrete producers in the Yozgat region, including Coşkunlar Hazır Beton İnş. Taah. San. ve Tic. A.Ş. (“Coşkunlar”), Irgatoğlu Hazır Beton Nak. San. ve Tic. Ltd. (...)

The French Competition Authority fines a big tech and its wholesalers a record €1.24 billion for engaging in restriction of resale opportunities, coordinating on prices and imposing unfair terms on its retailers (Apple / Tech Data / Ingram Micro)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
According to a press release of 16 March 2020, the French Competition Authority (the “FCA”) imposed a record-breaking fine of € 1.1 billion on Apple for anticompetitive practices in the distribution of Apple products (excluding iPhones). These practices included: (i) restricting resale (...)

The French Competition Authority issues a fine of €1.1 billion on a big tech company and €139 million on two of its wholesalers for having implemented vertical agreements with some of its distributors and for abuse of economic dependency against its independent premium resellers (Apple / Tech Data / Ingram Micro)
Ashurst (Paris)
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University of Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne (Paris)
On 16 March 2020, the French Competition Authority ("FCA") announced that it had fined Apple EUR1.1 billion, the highest fine ever imposed to an undertaking, for having implemented vertical agreements with certain of its distributors and an abuse of economic dependency against its independent (...)

The French Competition Authority fines a big tech company a record €1 billion and its wholesalers €139 million for a series of vertical restrictions within the distribution network and 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 Ankara Administrative Court reassesses the Competition Authority’s decision on price squeezing allegations in the telecommunications sector (Türk Telekom / TTNET)
ELIG Gürkaynak Attorneys-at-Law (Istanbul)
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ELIG Gürkaynak Attorneys-at-Law (Istanbul)
Background In 2012, the Board launched a full-fledged investigation against Türk Telekom and TTNET upon the complaints of certain Internet service providers (“ISP”), alleging that Türk Telekom and TTNET had abused their dominant positions in the wholesale and retail markets for fixed broadband (...)

The US DoJ warns businesses against price fixing, bid rigging and market sharing in the manufacturing or the distribution as well as the sale of public health products in the face of COVID-19 outbreak Free
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Justice Department Cautions Business Community Against Violating Antitrust Laws in the Manufacturing, Distribution, and Sale of Public Health Products* The Department of Justice today announced its intention to hold accountable anyone who violates the antitrust laws of the United States in (...)

The US DoJ charges two executives with conspiracy to rig bids and fix prices in the market for commercial flooring (Robert A. Patrey Jr. / Kenneth R. Smith)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Two Commercial Flooring Executives Plead Guilty to Rigging Bids in Violation of Federal Antitrust Laws* Two commercial flooring executives, Robert A. Patrey Jr. and Kenneth R. Smith, pleaded guilty for their role in an antitrust conspiracy to rig bids and fix prices for commercial flooring (...)

The US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit rules on the co-conspirator exception to the Illinois Brick rule against distributors in the healthcare market(Marion Healthcare / Becton Dickinson & Company)
Bona Law (San Diego)
The Seventh Circuit Explains the “Co-Conspiracy Exception” to the Illinois Brick Rule in Healthcare Antitrust Lawsuit* Antitrust law evolves in such a way that opinions from federal appellate courts are always interesting in how they affect the doctrine. But there are a select few judges who (...)

The Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit clarifies in a passing on case between two healthcare providers the issues of whether and when a consumer who purchases from a distributor may hold a manufacturer liable for overcharges resulting from a conspiracy between the distributor and manufacturer (Marion Healthcare / Becton Dickinson)
Hausfeld (New York)
Introduction In its recent decision in Marion Healthcare, LLC v. Becton Dickinson & Co., the Seventh Circuit added to the discussion among circuit courts as to whether and when a consumer who purchases from a distributor may hold a manufacturer liable for overcharges resulting from a (...)

The Californian Attorney General as well as other national jurisdiction’s Attorneys Generals announce their intent to take action against unfair "price gouging" and the US DOJ focuses on public health products during the COVID-19 situation Free
Paul Weiss (New York)
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Paul Weiss (New York)
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Paul Weiss (Washington)
State AGs Respond to COVID-19-Related “Price Gouging” and DOJ Antitrust Enforcement to Focus on Public Health Products* The outbreak and continued spread of a new strain of coronavirus, COVID-19, has led to surging demand for, and in some cases shortages in the supply of, a wide variety of (...)

The US Washington State Attorney General announces a price gouging investigation in the wake of COVID-19 public health emergency Free
Office of the Attorney General - Washington State
AG FERGUSON STATEMENT ON PRICE GOUGING IN PUBLIC-HEALTH EMERGENCY* SEATTLE — Attorney General Bob Ferguson offers the following statement: “My office is investigating price gouging in the wake of the COVID-19 public health emergency. We do not identify the targets of our investigations, but we (...)

The UK Competition Authority fines four pharmaceutical companies a total of £3,4 million for breaching competition law in relation to the supply of the antidepressant drug for market sharing and exchanging sensitive information (King Pharmaceuticals / Auden Mckenzie / Lexon / Alissa Healthcare)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 4 March 2020, the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA”) fined four pharmaceutical companies a total of £ 3.4 million for breaching competition law in relation to the supply of the antidepressant drug nortriptyline. The companies involved in the infringement were King Pharmaceuticals, (...)

The UK Competition Authority closes its pharma probe by fining 4 companies more than £3.4 million and requiring a payment of £1 million directly to the NHS for breaches of competition law in relation to the supply of an antidepressant (King Pharmaceuticals / Accord-UK / Lexon / Alissa Healthcare Research)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
Over £3m in fines and £1m for NHS in CMA pharma probe* Following an investigation, the CMA has found that 4 pharmaceutical companies broke competition law in relation to the supply of an antidepressant. The probe by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) into the supply of nortriptyline, a (...)

The US DoJ reaches deferred prosecution agreement with pharma company fined a record criminal penalty for a domestic antitrust case (Sandoz)
US Department of Justice - Antitrust Division (Washington)
Major Generic Pharmaceutical Company Admits to Antitrust Crimes: Sandoz Inc. Agrees to Pay a $195 Million Criminal Penalty, the Largest for a Domestic Antitrust Case* Sandoz Inc., a generic pharmaceutical company headquartered in New Jersey, was charged for conspiring to allocate customers, (...)

The EU Commission fines hotel group for including restrictive clauses in its agreements with tour operators (Meliá)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission fines hotel group Meliá €6.7 million for discriminating between customers* The European Commission has fined Spanish hotel group Meliá €6 678 000 for including restrictive clauses in its agreements with tour operators. These clauses discriminate consumers within the European (...)

The EU Commission imposes a €6.7 million fine on a Spanish hotel group for restrictions on cross-border sales of hotel accommodations by including discriminatory clauses in its agreements with tour operators (Meliá)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 21 February 2020, the European Commission (the “Commission”) announced its decision to fine Spanish hotel group Meliá € 6,678,000 for including clauses in its agreements with tour operators that discriminated between consumers based on their country of residence. According to the Commission’s (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority opens investigation into possible buyer cartel involving reusable waste products and conducts dawn raids in the sector (Waste buyers cartel)
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (The Hague)
ACM conducts investigation into possible buyer cartel involving reusable waste products* The Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) is conducting an investigation into a possible buyer cartel involving certain reusable waste products. As part of this investigation, ACM conducted (...)

The US DoJ confirms it has opened multiple new criminal investigations with its Procurement Collusion Strike Force
Baker Botts (Washington)
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Baker Botts (Washington)
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Baker Botts (Washington)
A senior official at the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) recently confirmed that the Antitrust Division has opened multiple grand jury investigations in connection with the Procurement Collusion Strike Force (“Strike Force”) formed in November of last year. Speaking at a conference on February (...)

The Dutch Trade and Industry Appeals Tribunal confirms that a company on which no fine is imposed could still be able to appeal the infringement decision in cases that it is held jointly and severally liable for the cartel infringement of its wholly-owned subsidiary (College van Beroep)
Bird & Bird (The Hague)
On 18 February 2020 the Dutch Trade and Industry Appeals Tribunal (“CBb”) ruled that a company may still have an interest in bringing proceedings against a cartel infringement decision even if no fine is imposed on it and even if it is not the direct addressee of the infringement decision. In the (...)

The Polish Competition Authority imposes a €325,000 fine on an office equipment maker for engaging in online retail price maintenance (Brother)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 11 February 2020, the Polish Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (the “UOKIK”) imposed a fine of PLN 1.4 million (approximately € 325,000) on office equipment maker Brother for online retail price maintenance (“RPM”). The UOKIK’s decision explains that, between the years 2010 and 2017, (...)

The Polish Competition Authority imposes a fine on a manufacturer of office equipment who set minimum online sale prices for its printers (Brother)
Bird & Bird (Warsaw)
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Bird & Bird (Warsaw)
In February 2020, the Polish Competition Authority (“UOKiK”) announced that in December 2019 it imposed a PLN 1.4 million fine on Brother Central & Eastern Europe (“Brother”), a manufacturer of office equipment, which set minimum online sale prices for printers. Between 2010 and 2017, Brother (...)

The Russian Competition Authority analyses the state of competition in the market for seeding soybeans
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
FAS ANALYSED THE STATE OF COMPETITION ON THE MARKET OF SEEDING SOYBEANS* The results show significant dependence of the Russian market on import of the agricultural crop The goal of the survey1 is to analyze dependence of the domestic market on supplies of foreign-developed seed material to (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority imposes fines totaling €1.1 million on members of the same economic interest group in a cartel investigation in Mexico’s public health sector (Productos Galeno / Holiday de Mexico)
Ritch Mueller (Mexico City)
On January 30th, 2020, in the context of case file DE-020-2014, the plenary session of the Mexican Federal Competition Commission (’Cofece’) has imposed fines totaling MXN$28,790,000 (approximately, €1.1 million) to Productos Galeno and Holiday de Mexico, as well as to two individuals who acted on (...)

The Paris Commercial Court grants interim measures to a large food retailer imposing on one of its suppliers of non-alcoholic beverages to resume its deliveries (Intermarché / Coca-Cola)
BCTG Avocats (Paris)
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BCTG Avocats (Paris)
Following the Coca Cola European Partners’ decision (hereinafter ’Coca-Cola’) to stop delivering its products to ITM Alimentaire International (hereinafter ’ITM’), ITM applied for interim measures before the Paris Commercial Court (hereinafter the “Court”) in early 2020. On January 16th, 2020, the (...)

The German Competition Authority fines seven wholesalers of plant protection products and their responsible employees for agreeing on price lists, discounts and some individual sales prices (AGRAVIS Raiffeisen / AGRO Agrargroßhandel / BayWa / Betriebsmittel Service Logistik / Getreide / Raiffeisen Waren / Kassel / ZG Raiffeisen)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Wholesalers of plant protection products fined for anti-competitive agreements on price lists, discounts and individual prices* Bonn, 13 January 2020: The Bundeskartellamt has imposed fines totalling 154.6 million euros on seven wholesalers of plant protection products and their responsible (...)

The Indian Competition Authority directs an investigation into allegations of anti-competitive agreements between e-commerce marketplaces (Amazon & Flipkart)
Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas (New Delhi)
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Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas (New Delhi)
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Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas (New Delhi)
The Competition Commission of India (CCI) has directed an investigation into allegations of anti-competitive agreements between e-commerce marketplaces Amazon and Flipkart, on the one hand, and sellers on these marketplaces, on the other. A Delhi based traders’ body alleged that Amazon and (...)

The German Competition Authority imposes fines totalling €154.6 million on plant protection product suppliers for agreeing on price lists, rebates and retail prices (Agravis / Agro Agrargroßhandel / BayWa / BSL Betriebsmittel Service Logistik / Getreide / Raiffeisen Waren / ZG Raiffeisen)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 13 January 2020, the German Federal Cartel Office (FCO) imposed fines totalling € 154.6 million on seven undertakings for agreeing on price lists, rebates and retail prices for plant protection products between 1998 and 2015. Fines were also imposed on employees implicated in the infringing (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority opens investigation into potential anticompetitive practices in the maritime transport of passengers and vehicles in the South of Spain (Algeciras / Ceuta)
Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
The Spanish Competition and Markets Authority, CNMC, is investigating whether a number of companies active in maritime transport between Algeciras and Ceuta may be in breach of article 1 of the Spanish Competition Act (‘LDC’) and article 101 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the EU (‘TFEU’). (...)

The French Competition Authority fines meal vouchers issuers for anticompetitive practices taking the form of information exchange, market sharing and price-fixing (Edenred France / Up / Natixis Intertitres / Sodexo Pass France)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence fines the four historical meal vouchers issuers for a total of nearly 415 M€, for anticompetitive practices* Background The Autorité has been informed of anti-competitive practices in the meal vouchers sector by the company Octoplus (Resto Flash), which offers a (...)

The French Competition Authority fines fruit-compote manufacturers for pricing agreement and market sharing (Conserves France / Valade / Délis / Vergers de Chateaubourg / Materne / Andros / Charles Faraud / Charles & Alice)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence hands down fine worth a total of up to 58.3 million euros to the main fruit-compote manufacturers for pricing agreement and market sharing* Background The Autorité publishes today a decision by which it fines a national cartel between the main fruit-compote (...)

The German Competition Authority fines €646 million three companies and three persons for agreeing and exchanging certain supplements and surcharges for quarto plates (Ilsenburger / Thyssenkrupp Steel / Voestalpine)
Fieldfisher (Düsseldorf)
Steel manufacturers fined record €646 million for agreeing surcharges and exchanging information* The Federal Cartel Office (FCO) has fined three companies and three persons a total of approximately €646 million. The companies agreed and exchanged certain supplements and surcharges for so-called (...)

The Ankara Regional Administrative Court annuls the lower Court’s decision due to the claimant’s lack of capacity to sue in a case alleging resale price maintenance in the market for cereals and legumes (Duru Bulgur)
ACTECON (Istanbul)
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ACTECON (Istanbul)
Capacity to Sue of Consumers Whose Interests Are Affected Was Held Under the Microscope of the Administrative Courts in Turkey* The issue of the “appropriate claimant” or the capacity to sue always comes into question at the stage of the judicial review of the decisions of the competition (...)

The Danish High Court finds distributor of hair products guilty of illegal resale price maintenance (Icon Hairspa)
Bird & Bird (Copenhagen)
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Bird & Bird (Copenhagen)
On 10 December 2019, the Danish High Court found that the Danish company, Icon Hairspa A/S, was guilty of illegal resale price maintenance by dictating the minimum resale price of certain hair products for their retailers. From 2016 to 2017, Icon Hairspa required that all retailers ought to (...)

The Hungarian Competition Authority fines alarm system distributors over €1.5 million for anticompetitive agreements (Paradox)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
The Hungarian Competition Authority (“GVH”) fined a supplier of security alarm systems, Paradox Security Systems (“Paradox”), registered in the Bahamas, and two of its Hungarian distributors, Power Biztonságtechnikai Kereskedelmi Kft (“Power”) and Trióda Biztonságtechnika Zrt (“Trióda”), approximately (...)

The German Competition Authority and the Federal Network Agency publish their joint annual monitoring report on developments in the German electricity and gas markets
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
ENERGY MONITORING REPORT 2019 PUBLISHED BY THE BUNDESNETZAGENTUR AND THE BUNDESKARTELLAMT* The Bundesnetzagentur and the Bundeskartellamt have today published their joint annual monitoring report on developments in the German electricity and gas markets. At present no market dominance in (...)

The Danish Supreme Court renders a judgement on the legality of consortium agreements and repeals a decision between two companies regarding their joint bid on a public tender for road marking work (LFK / Eurostar)
Gorrissen Federspiel (Copenhagen)
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Gorrissen Federspiel (Copenhagen)
The legality of consortium agreements under competition law has been widely debated in recent years. On 27 November 2019 the Supreme Court rendered a much-anticipated judgment on this subject. The court repealed a Maritime and Commercial High Court decision from 2018 in a case concerning a (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority fines a company for anticompetitive restrictions in contracts concluded with authorised repairers of gas boilers (Vaillant)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 26 November 2019, the Spanish Competition Authority (“CNMC”) imposed total fines of € 859,763 on several companies in the Vaillant Group, suppliers and repairers of gas boilers, for a breach of Article 1 of the Spanish Competition Act for anticompetitive restrictions in contracts concluded with (...)

The German Competition Authority fines car manufacturers for anticompetitive practices in the purchase of steel (BMW / Daimler / Volkswagen)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
German car manufacturers fined for anticompetitive practices in the purchase of steel* The Bundeskartellamt has imposed fines totalling around 100 million euros on Bayerische Motoren Werke AG, Daimler AG and Volkswagen AG for anticompetitive practices in the purchase of long steel products. (...)

The German Competition Authority fines car makers for steel purchasing cartel (BMW / Daimler / Volkswagen)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
According to a press release of the German Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) dated 21 November 2019, car manufacturers BMW, Daimler and Volkswagen were fined a total amount of approximately € 100 million for their involvement in a steel purchasing cartel between 2004 and 2013. The anticompetitive (...)

The Chinese State Administration for Market Regulation publishes a draft to incentivise whistle blowing and reward measures for complaints against significant illegal conduct in the regulation field
Hogan Lovells (Beijing)
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Hogan Lovells (Hong Kong)
This article has been nominated for the 2020 Antitrust Writing Awards. Click here to learn more about the Antitrust Writing Awards. COMPETITION LAW WHISTLE-BLOWING TO PAY OFF IN CHINA ?* As the number of leniency applications is down globally and competition authorities are struggling to find (...)

The EU General Court reduces the fine imposed on a company involved in a car battery recycling cartel (Campine)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 7 November 2019, the General Court (“GC”) ruled on an appeal lodged by Campine Recycling NV (“Campine”) against the Commission’s decision fining Campine € 8,158,000 for its involvement in the Car Battery Recycling cartel. In its decision, the Commission found that Campine had agreed with others to (...)

The UK Court of Appeal clarifies principles governing competition damages and reiterates that judges must base their decisions on the evidence before them by exclusively focusing on the loss of the claimant (BritNed / ABB)
Case Associates (London)
The Court of Appeal in BritNed v ABB [2019] EWCA Civ 1840 has again had to clarify the principles governing competition damages. It reaffirmed the English High Court’s rejection of the claimant’s approach to damages but took issue with the trial judge’s position that damages should err on the side (...)

The Indian Competition Authority orders an investigation against online travel agencies for possible abuse of dominance and for imposing vertical restrictions (MakeMyTrip / OYO)
Trilegal (Mumbai)
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Trilegal (Bangalore)
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Trilegal (Mumbai)
Introduction The Federation of Hotel & Restaurant Associations of India (Informant), an association of hotels and restaurants in India, filed an Information with the Competition Commission of India (CCI) against MakeMyTrip India Pvt. Ltd. (MMT), Ibibo Group Private Limited (GoIbibo), (...)

The UK Competition Authority fines three construction companies for price-fixing, market sharing and exchange of information (Stanton Bonna Concrete / CPM / FP McCann)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
Construction firms fined £36 million for breaking competition law* The CMA has issued 3 firms with fines totalling more than £36 million for breaking competition law in supplying certain concrete drainage products for building projects. Following an investigation by the Competition and Markets (...)

The US DOJ opens an investigation of four car manufacturers for possible collusion by entering into an agreement with the State of California on light vehicle emissions and gas mileage standards
Richard Wolfram, Esq. (New York)
THE DOJ INVESTIGATES CAR MANUFACTURERS FOR ’COLLUSSION’ IN THEIR FRAMEWORK AGREEMENT WITH CALIFORNIA ON GAS MILEAGE AND EMISSIONS STANDARDS: SOUNDING THE DEPTHS OF PROSECUTORIAL DISCRETION ON ANTICOMPETITIVE COLLUSION AS DISTINGUISHED FROM PROCOMPETITIVE COLLABORATION* At a historic moment in (...)

The Belgian Competition Authority carries out an unannounced inspection in the pharmaceutical sector
Belgian Competition Authority (Brussels)
The Belgian Competition Authority is conducting inspections in the pharmaceutical sector* The Investigation and Prosecution Service of the Belgian Competition Authority (BCA) is currently conducting inspections at the premises of companies suspected of having implemented restrictive practices (...)

The Spanish Competition and Markets Authority fines companies for participating in a cartel in the industrial assembly and maintenance sector (Montaje Y Mantenimiento Industrial)
Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
The CNMC has dismantled a cartel in the industrial assembly and maintenance sector. According to the CNMC, the practices in question were conducted with the aim of increasing prices in the services provided, mainly, to energy and petrochemical clients. The cartel members engaged in client (...)

The Canadian Supreme Court expands the scope of potential liability in price-fixing class actions (Pioneer / Godfrey)
Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg (Toronto)
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Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg (Toronto)
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Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg (Toronto)
The Supreme Court of Canada has released its long-awaited decision in two companion appeals that have significant implications for class actions alleging conduct that contravenes the criminal provisions found in Part VI of the Competition Act (Act). In its decision in Pioneer Corporation v (...)

The Swiss Competition Authority fines a manufacturer of sports products for vertical price fixing with dealers (Stöckli)
Lenz & Staehelin (Zurich)
Introduction The Swiss Competition Commission (“ComCo”) fined Stöckli Swiss Sports (“Stöckli”), a Swiss manufacturer of Skis and other sport products, for vertical price fixing with its dealers with CHF 140’000. The fine was rather low, as Stöckli had filed a leniency application, albeit after ComCo (...)

The UK Competition Authority imposes a record-breaking £3.7 million fine on a piano supplier for online resale price maintenance (Casio)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
According to a press release issued on 1 August 2019, the Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA”) imposed a fine of £ 3.7 million (approximately € 4.1 million) on piano supplier Casio Electronics (“Casio”) for online resale price maintenance (RPM). Between the years 2013 and 2018, Casio reportedly (...)

The Portuguese Competition Authority fines a brewing company for engaging in resale price maintenance practices in hotels, restaurants and cafés (Super Bock)
Portuguese Competition Authority (Lisbon)
AdC sanctioned Super Bock for fixing minimum resale prices in hotels, restaurants and cafes* The AdC (Autoridade da Concorrência) sanctioned Super Bock Bebidas S.A., one board member and one director of the company to fines of €24 million for fixing minimum resale prices and other commercial (...)

The Croatian Competition Authority fines companies for price fixing cartel in the sewage treatment market (Daska / Krtolin / Jole / Garma-promet / Kula)
Croatian Competition Agency (Zagreb)
Price fixing cartel in the sewage treatment market – CCA imposes fines* The Croatian Competition Agency detected a prohibited agreement – cartel between five undertakings in the Šibenik region who fixed the price in the provision of pumping out, transportation and disposal of human waste from (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority fines tortilla-producing associations for price-fixing and market sharing (Unión Palenque / Unión Flor de Maíz / Asociación de la Industriade la Masa)
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE sanctions 5 natural persons and 3 tortilla-producing associations for price fixing and the segmentation of the corn tortilla market in the municipality of Palenque, in the state of Chiapas* • The sanctioned economic agents fixed prices per kilogram of tortilla in a range of 10 to 17 (...)

The Italian Competition Authority fines several companies having implemented two anticompetitive agreements in the market for corrugated cardboard sheets and in the market for corrugated cardboard packaging (Pro-Gest, Cartonstrong Italia, Ondulato Trevigiano, Ondulati Maranello...)
Italian Competition Authority (Rome)
ICA: corrugated cardboard, fines of over €287 million for the main manufacturing companies* On 17 July 2019, the Antitrust Authority concluded an investigation, finding that two separate agreements had been implemented to distort the competitive dynamics in the market for corrugated cardboard (...)

The EU Court of Justice reaffirms the General Court’s decision to annul the fines imposed by the Commission in the Yen Interest Rate Derivatives cartel case (Icap)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 10 July 2019, the Court of Justice of the European Union (the “ECJ”) delivered a judgment on an appeal lodged by the European Commission (the “Commission”) against the judgment of the General Court (the “GC”) that had annulled the fines imposed by the Commission on ICAP in the Yen Interest Rate (...)

The Turkish Competition Authority investigates an alleged anticompetitive agreement in the e-commerce sector for having implemented vertical restraints (Hepsiburada / Anka Mobil)
Erdem & Erdem (Istanbul)
Introduction With its decision dated 10.07.2019 and numbered 19-22/326-M, the Turkish Competition Board (“Board”) launched a formal investigation against D-Market Elektronik Hizmetleri ve Ticaret A.Ş. (“Hepsiburada”) and Anka Mobil Tedarik A.Ş. (“Anka Mobil”) to determine whether the relevant (...)

The EU Commission re-adopts its decision for the third time and imposes fines totalling more than €16 million on steel producers (Steel bar cartel)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 4 July 2019, the European Commission (the “Commission”) adopted for the third time a cartel decision in which it imposed total fines of more than € 16 million on five Italian manufacturers of reinforcing steel bars for concrete, namely AlfaAcciai, Feralpi Holding, Ferriere Nord, Partecipazioni (...)

The Canadian Competition Authority announces that ticket vendors will pay $4 million penalty to settle drip pricing advertising case (Ticketmaster)
Steve Szentesi Law Corporation (Vancouver)
TICKETMASTER ENTITIES AGREE TO $4 MILLION PENALTY TO SETTLE DRIP PRICING ADVERTISING CASE On June 27, 2019, the Competition Bureau (Bureau) announced that Ticketmaster L.L.C., TNow Entertainment Group, Inc. and Ticketmaster Canada LP have agreed to pay a $4 million penalty and $500,000 of the (...)

The French Competition Authority fines a network of notaries and a chamber of notaries for anticompetitive agreement (GIE Notimo)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Estate negotiation/notaries* The Autorité de la concurrence fines GIE Notimo and the chambre interdépartementale des notaires de Franche-Comté for anticompetitive practices. Background The law of 6 August 2015, socalled "Macron law" which has reformed regulated professions in order to (...)

The Rotterdam District Court annuls a fine imposed by the Dutch Competition Authority on a manufacturer of batteries for forklift trucks for its involvement in a cartel (Midac)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 20 June 2019, the Rotterdam District Court (“Court”) annulled a fine of € 583,000 imposed by the Dutch Authority for Consumers and Markets (“Autoriteit Consument & Markt” or “ACM”) on Midac, a manufacturer of batteries for forklift trucks, for its involvement in a cartel. The Court held that (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority fines 26 companies and two trade associations for taking part in a school transportation cartel and confirms the prohibition of contracting with the public sector (Transporte Escolar Murcia)
CMS Albiñana y Suárez de Lezo (Madrid)
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CMS Albiñana y Suárez de Lezo (Madrid)
On 20 June 2019, the Spanish Competition and Markets Authority (Comisión Nacional de los Mercados y la Competencia, “CNMC” or “Spanish Competition Authority”) fined 26 school transportation companies and two trade associations for taking part in a bid-rigging cartel. The fines amounted to EUR 1.88 (...)

The UK Competition Authority provisionally finds that four pharmaceutical companies broke competition law by fixing the quantities and the prices of an anti-depressant drug (Auden Mckenzie / King / Alissa / Lexon)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
Suppliers of antidepressants accused of illegal anti-competitive conduct* The CMA has provisionally found that 4 pharmaceutical companies broke competition law in relation to the supply of an anti-depressant drug. The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has accused competitors King and (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority fines toothbrush suppliers for bid rigging in public health sector (Galeno / Dentilab / Holiday)
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE sanctions toothbrush suppliers for bid rigging in public health sector tenders* • The sanctioned companies coordinated and rigged bids in public tenders, or abstained from participating, to divide amongst them the market of toothbrushes for adults and infants procured by the health (...)

The Düsseldorf Court of Appeal quashes the Competition Authority’s decision and finds a most favoured nation clause compatible with antitrust law for a hotel booking platform (Booking.com)
Heinz & Zagrosek (Köln)
Booking.com’s "narrow" MFN clauses now also permissible in Germany, Court of Appeals rules* On June 4, 2019, the Düsseldorf Court of Appeal quashed the decision of the Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) prohibiting Booking.com to operate so-called narrow most favored nation (MFN) clauses (or best price (...)

The Dusseldorf Court of Appeal overturns the Competition Authority’s prohibition of narrow best price clauses (Booking.com)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 4 June 2019, the Higher Regional Court of Düsseldorf (the “Court”) ruled that narrow best price clauses are not anticompetitive and overturned the decision of the Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) prohibiting Booking.com from using such clauses in contracts with hotel operators. ‘Narrow’ best price (...)

The Spanish Supreme Court confirms the Competition Authority’s decision in fining a company for agreements and exchange of strategic information on prices (Repsol)
Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
The Spanish Supreme Court has confirmed the penalty against Repsol for anticompetitive practices consisting in agreements and exchange of strategic information on the prices of fuel in Spain. In the judgement, the Supreme Court has upheld the claims of the State Attorney (central government (...)

The EU General Court dismisses an appeal in the car battery recycling cartel case (Recylex / Fonderie et Manufacture de Métaux / Harz-Metall)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 23 May 2019, the General Court delivered a judgment in which it dismissed the appeal lodged by Recylex against the European Commission’s (“Commission”) decision in the car battery recycling cartel case (Case T-222/17, Recylex and Others v. Commission). In February 2017, the Commission imposed (...)

The Hungarian Competition Authority fines a retailer for fixing the online retail prices of its products (Husqvarna Magyarország)
Hungarian Competition Authority (Budapest)
The GVH imposes a fine of HUF 100 million on Husqvarna Magyarország Kft. for fixing the online retail prices of its products* The Gazdasági Versenyhivatal (the Hungarian Competition Authority, GVH) imposed a fine of HUF 111 million (approx. EUR 330 thousand) on Husqvarna Magyarország Kft. because (...)

The EU Commission imposes fines totalling over € 1 billion on banks for their involvement in two separate cartels in the spot foreign exchange markets (Barclays / RBS / Citigroup / JPMorgan / MUFG)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 16 May 2019, the European Commission adopted two decisions under its cartel settlement procedure, in which it imposed fines totalling € 1.07 billion on five banks for their involvement in two separate cartels on the spot foreign exchange markets for eleven currencies. The banks involved in (...)

The Cypriot Competition Authority fines several companies for bid-rigging in the supply and transportation of ready-mix concrete market (Mattheos Ioannou Ready Mix Concrete / C. Kythreotis Skyrodema / Skyramix...)
Commission for the Protection of Competition of the Republic of Cyprus (Nicosia)
The Commission for the Protection of Competition with its decision imposed on the following undertakings: 1. Mattheos Ioannou Ready Mix Concrete Ltd, 2. C.Kythreotis Skyrodema Ltd, 3. Skyramix Ltd, 4. Athinodorou & Poullas Super Beton Ltd, 5.Top Mix Concrete Ltd, 6. I & S Kritonis (...)

The UK Competition Authority secures the disqualification of two former director having participated to a cartel aimed to fix or coordinate prices and share out the market for certain pre-cast concrete drainage products (PM / Stanton Bonna / FP McCann)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
Construction cartel directors disqualified* The CMA has secured the disqualification of 2 former directors of CPM Group Ltd following CPM’s admission that it breached competition law. The move follows the Competition and Market Authority’s (CMA) statement of objections issued on 13 December (...)

The Estonian Competition Authority opens criminal proceedings to investigate a possible restriction of competition in the agricultural equipment market
Estonian Competition Authority (Tallinn)
Authority conducts criminal proceedings for investigating a possible restriction of competition in companies selling agricultural equipment* In the framework of a criminal case concerning a possible restriction of competition, the Competition Authority carried out searches at the premises of (...)

The Portuguese Competition Authority fines two companies and one of its managers for participating in a horizontal agreement in the railway maintenance services sector (Mota-Engil / Engenharia e Construção)
Portuguese Competition Authority (Lisbon)
AdC sanctions an undertaking and its manager for anticompetitive practices in the sector of railway maintenance services* The AdC imposed fines totalling 906.485,58 euros on Mota-Engil – Engenharia e Construção, S.A., and one of its managers, for participating in a horizontal agreement (cartel), (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority investigates the rail transport of chemical and petrochemical products and determines that there is a lack of effective competition (Veracruz)
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE’s Investigative Authority preliminarily determines the lack of effective competition in the rail transport of chemical and petrochemical products in the south of the state of Veracruz* The Investigative Authority’s Preliminary Opinion stipulates that lack of competition affects the rail (...)

The Portuguese Competition Authority issues statements of objections to supermarket chains and beverage suppliers for price fixing (Modelo Continente / Pingo Doce / Auchan and Intermarché / Lidl / E. Leclerc)
Portuguese Competition Authority (Lisbon)
AdC issues Statements of Objections to supermarket chains and beverage suppliers for price fixing, harmful to consumers* The AdC – Portuguese Competition Authority issued three Statements of Objections to six large food retail groups in Portugal and three beverage suppliers for taking part in (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority imposes fines totalling € 118 million on railway infrastructure companies for participating in a cartel (Cobra / Elecnor / Siemens / Semi / Inabensa / Alstom / Cymi / Isolux / Electre / Comsa / Indra / Neopul / Telice / Eym / Citracc)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 14 March 2019, the Spanish competition authority (“CNMC”) imposed fines totalling € 118 million on fifteen companies, namely Cobra, Elecnor, Siemens, Semi, Inabensa, Alstom, Cymi, Isolux, Electren, Comsa, Indra, Neopul, Telice, Eym and Citracc, for their involvement in a cartel on the market (...)

The US District Court for the Northern District of California finds that an athletic association’s cap on grants given to athletes is an anticompetitive restraint of trade (National Collegiate Athletic Association)
Constantine Cannon (New York)
NCAA May Have Lost Antitrust Case to Student-Athletes, But How Much Did It Really Lose?* Friday’s 104-page ruling in the antitrust case challenging the compensation rules of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (“NCAA”) is not a clear-cut victory for either side. Although Judge Claudia (...)

The Indian Competition Authority finds no violation in a cinema chain exclusively selling one beverage producer’s products (Inox / Coca-Cola)
Vaish Associates Advocates (New Delhi)
CCI holds no violation in exclusive selling beverages of Coca-Cola by INOX Theatres at higher rates than the retail price* The Competition Commission of India (“CCI/ Commission”) by way of order dated 28.02.2019 exonerated INOX Leisure Ltd (“INOX”) and Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages Private Ltd (...)

The UK FCA issues its first antitrust decision and fines several companies for sharing strategic information during an initial public offering (Hargreave / Newton / RAMAM)
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (London)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Brussels)
The U.K. Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has issued its first antitrust decision since obtaining competition law powers four years ago. The decision is a controversial one. It sets the FCA up as a strict enforcer on the type of information that competing investors can share when making (...)

The UK Court of Appeal upholds the UK Competition Authority’s fining and confirms that a single exchange of pricing information is sufficient for a "by object" infringement (Balmoral)
Baker Botts (Brussels)
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Baker Botts (Brussels)
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Baker Botts (London)
ONE-TIME INFORMATION EXCHANGE SUFFICIENT – A RECENT REMINDER IN THE UK* The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA”) recently welcomed the Court of Appeal’s dismissal of a challenge brought against a decision of the Competition Appeal Tribunal (“CAT”) by Balmoral, a supplier of steel water (...)

The Italian Competition Authority finds two anti-competitive agreements in the market for the provision of fire prevention services (Wood Firefighting Services)
Giannino SI (Monserrato)
In the recent Wood Fire Service case, the Italian Competition Authority (ICA) has found two anti-competitive agreements put in place by several players in the market for the provision of wood fire prevention services. The first anti-competitive agreement took the shape of a bid rigging practice (...)

The Belgian Competition Authority closes several inquiries concerning restrictive practices in the travel sector and the freight handlers in the Flemish ports
Belgian Competition Authority (Brussels)
The Investigation and Prosecution Service of the Belgian Competition Authority has closed several inquiries concerning restrictive practices on the one hand the travel sector and on the other hand the freight handlers in the Flemish ports* In the course of 2006, the College of Competition (...)

The German Competition Authority fines a bicycle wholesaler for vertical price-fixing (ZEG)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Fine imposed on bicycle wholesaler ZEG for vertical price-fixing* The Bundeskartellamt has imposed fines totalling around 13.4 million euros on the bicycle wholesaler ZEG Zweirad-Einkaufs-Genossenschaft eG (ZEG), Cologne, and its representatives for fixing prices with 47 bicycle retailers. The (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority opens an investigation concerning suspected price-fixing agreements between consumer-goods manufacturers and retailers
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (The Hague)
ACM investigates price-fixing agreements between consumer-goods manufacturers and retailers* The Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) has launched an investigation into price-fixing agreements between consumer-goods manufacturers and retailers (including online retailers). ACM (...)

The Danish Competition Authority finds two competing media owners have fixing prices in breach of Danish Competition Law (Clear Channel Danmark and AFA JCDecaux)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Outdoor media owners illegally agreed to fix discounts for several years* The two competing media owners Clear Channel Danmark A/S and AFA JCDecaux A/S, who both sell advertising space in outdoor-media, agreed to common discounts in violation of the Danish Competition Act. Chairman of the (...)

The UK Competition and Markets Authority provisionally finds that three drainage product manufacturers participated to illegal cartel (FP McCann / Derbyshire-based Stanton Bonna Concrete / Somerset-based CPM Group)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
Two construction firms admit to illegal cartel* The CMA has provisionally found that 3 drainage product manufacturers broke competition law by co-ordinating prices for customers and sharing the market. Two of the businesses – Derbyshire-based Stanton Bonna Concrete Ltd and Somerset-based CPM (...)

The City Court of Odense acquits construction companies accused of exchanging prices and coordinating their bids (Jorton / H. Skjøde Knudsen)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Denmark: City Court acquits construction companies in bid rigging case* The City Court of Odense acquitted the construction companies Jorton A/S and H. Skjøde Knudsen A/S as well as three members of the management in a bid rigging case. On 12 December 2018, the City Court of Odense acquitted (...)

The French Competition Authority fines six household appliance manufacturers for agreeing on price increases (BSH / Candy Hoover / Eberhart Frères / Electrolux / Indesit / Whirlpool)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence hands down fines worth a total of €189 million to six household appliance manufacturers, among the largest in the sector, notably for having agreed on price increases * Background Following evidence provided by the Directorate General for Competition Policy, (...)

The French Competition Authority fines household appliance manufacturers for price-fixing (BSH / Candy Hoover / Eberhardt Frères / Electrolux / Indesit / Whirlpool)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 6 December 2018, the French Competition Authority (“FCA”) imposed a total fine of € 189 million on six household appliance manufacturers (BSH, Candy Hoover, Eberhardt Frères, Electrolux, Indesit and Whirlpool) for participating in two distinct cartels. In the first cartel, which lasted from (...)

The EU Commission invites interested parties to comment on the commitments offered by two credit card companies to address competition concerns relating to inter-regional interchange fees for card payment transactions (Mastercard II / Visa)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission seeks feedback on commitments offered by Visa and Mastercard on inter-regional interchange fees* The European Commission is inviting comments from interested parties on commitments offered separately by Visa and Mastercard to address competition concerns relating to (...)

The Turkish Competition Authority determines whether members of the guard rails and road safety systems have violated article 4 of the Law No. 4054 on the Protection of Competition through collusive tendering and bid rigging (Çelik Otokorkuluk)
ELIG Gürkaynak Attorneys-at-Law (Istanbul)
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ELIG Gürkaynak Attorneys-at-Law (Istanbul)
This case note analyses the Turkish Competition Board’s (“Board”) decision of 22 November 2018 numbered 18-44/702-344 in which the Board assessed the allegations that several undertakings–which are all active in the steel guardrail sector in Turkey and members of the Turkish Association of Steel (...)

The US District Court for the Eastern District of Texas declares that a licensing offer based on end-device is compliant with FRAND commitments (HTC / Ericsson)
Crowell & Moring (Washington)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
Standard-essential patent holders and implementers may face uncertainty regarding licensing practices following a May 23 Texas court ruling. In the ruling, a Texas federal judge reached a conclusion different from a recent California court decision — FTC v. Qualcomm — on the question of whether (...)

The Indian Competition Authority holds that information exchange is not a standalone violation of the Indian Competition Act (Flashlights cartel)
Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas (New Delhi)
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Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas (New Delhi)
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Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas (New Delhi)
On 6 November 2018, the Competition Commission of India (CCI) found that four manufacturers/traders of flashlights and their trade association (the Opposite Parties) were not involved in cartelisation as, despite an information exchange, there was not enough corroborating evidence to suggest a (...)

The Turkish Competition Authority announces the conclusion of its preliminary inquiry and finds no price fixing in the baby food products market (Numil / Nestlé / Montero / Kopas / Hipp / Hero / Abbott)
ACTECON (Istanbul)
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ACTECON (Istanbul)
Introduction In February 2019, the Turkish Competition Authority (“TCA”) released the public version of its decision with regard to its preliminary inquiry against the undertakings producing and/or selling baby food products. Contrary to the price fixing allegations, the TCA found that the (...)

The UK Competition Authority launches a new campaign "Stop Cartels" to educate businesses about anticompetitive practices and encourage leniency
Rosenblatt Limited (London)
COMPETITION & MARKETS AUTHORITY GETS TOUGH ON CARTELS* On 22 October 2018, the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) announced that it had launched a new “Stop Cartels” campaign to educate businesses about anti-competitive practices and encourage people to come forward if they suspect (...)

The Botswana Competition Authority rejects an exemption application brought by two fast moving consumer good companies (Choppies / Payless)
Primerio (Washington)
BOTSWANA COMPETITION AUTHORITY: EXCEPTION APPLICATION BACKFIRES FOR CHOPPIES-PAYLESS BUYING GROUP* The Competition Authority of Botswana (CA) rejected an exemption application brought by two FMCG players. The applicants, Choppies Distribution Centre and Payless Supermarkets, sought to justify (...)

The UK High Court of Justice rejects methodology for estimating overcharges on cables based on economic evidence (BritNed / ABB)
The Brattle Group (London)
ABSTRACT In the first cartel overcharge claim brought in the English High Court, the claimant’s methodology for estimating ABB overcharges on the BritNed cable was comprehensively rejected. The Court concluded that the claimant’s econometric analysis was insufficiently grounded in facts and (...)

The UK High Court of Justice rejects econometrics analysis in a cartel damage case for being too complex (BritNed / ABB)
Case Associates (London)
BritNed Development Ltd v. ABB AB and ABB Ltd [2018] EWHC 2616 (Ch). (“BritNed”) is the first English cartel damage judgment and the first to consider an econometric approach to calculating overcharges. The court rejected the claimant’s econometric analysis as ‘too complex’ and “unspecific”. Here (...)

The UK Competition Authority issues a study into pricing algorithms in order to identify whether they could be used to support illegal practices
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
Algorithm research builds on work in digital markets* The CMA has published a study into pricing algorithms and whether they could be used to support illegal practices. The research increases the CMA’s expertise at a time of widespread scrutiny of pricing algorithms and how they interact with (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority examines possible price fixing and other vertical restrictions in the animal health products market (Medicamentos Veterinarios)
CMS Albiñana y Suárez de Lezo (Madrid)
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CMS Albiñana y Suárez de Lezo (Madrid)
Background On 16 September 2014, the National Association for Animal Health (“ASEMAZ-ASA”) filed a complaint before the Spanish Competition Authority (“CNMC”) against several companies active in the animal health products market (“the Companies”) for alleged anti-competitive practices in breach of (...)

The French Competition Authority issues an opinion regarding competition in the building materials markets in Mayotte and La Réunion
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Building materials in La Réunion and Mayotte* Finding major price discrepancies with Mainland France, the Autorité is issuing an opinion to the government, in which it makes several recommendations As part of the fight against high living costs, the French Minister for Economy and Finance (...)

The South African Competition Tribunal rejects a tender collusion allegation on the basis that the tender was a sham (Geometry / Vaxiprox)
Anheuser-Busch InBev (Leuven)
The Competition Commission of South Africa (the Commission) sought an order from the Competition Tribunal of South Africa (the Tribunal) declaring that two brand activation companies (Geometry Global (Pty) Ltd (Geometry) and Vaxiprox (Pty) Ltd (Vaxiprox)) had colluded on a tender issued by a (...)

The French Competition Authority imposes fine on waste disposal company for increasing the prices charged on hospitals and clinics in Corsica (Sanicorse)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Management of infectious medical waste generated by healthcare activities* The Autorité de la concurrence has fined the company Sanicorse for increasing abruptly, significantly, durably and in an unjustified manner the waste disposal prices it charged hospitals and clinics in Corsica. The (...)

The UK Competition Authority fines an airports for restricting competition on parking prices in a lease with the operator of a Terminal hotel (Heathrow / Arora)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
Heathrow and Arora admit to anti-competitive car park agreement* Heathrow airport will pay a £1.6m fine for restricting competition on parking prices in a lease with the operator of a Terminal 5 hotel. The fine to be imposed by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), comes after its (...)

The French Supreme Court uses the EU Court of Justice framework to overturn a judgment issued in a cartel of endives producers (Endive cartel)
Niddam-Drouas Avocats (Paris)
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Niddam-Drouas Avocats (Paris)
In the endive cartel case, the French Supreme Court (Cour de casssation) judgement issued 12 September 2018 analyses the relationship between competition law and EU agricultural rules. In its decision following a preliminary ruling issued by the European Court of Justice (ECJ), the Supreme (...)

The Indian Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) upholds the Indian Competition Authority’s record fine imposed in the cement cartel case (Builders’ Association of India / Cement Manufacturers’ Association)
Vaish Associates Advocates (New Delhi)
NCLAT upholds the highest penalty imposed by CCI on cement cartel* The National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) by way of a judgement dated 25 July 2018 has upheld the penalty imposed by the Competition Commission of India (CCI) on 11 cement companies for cartelization. The CCI in its (...)

The EU Commission fines four leading consumer electronics manufacturers for fixing online resale prices (Asus / Denon & Marantz / Philips / Pioneer)
Rosenblatt Limited (London)
EU COMMISSION FINES MAJOR CONSUMER ELECTRONICS MANUFACTURERS FOR FIXING ONLINE RESALE PRICES* On 24th July 2018 the EU Commission passed a decision to enforce the competition rules in yet another case involving the e-commerce sector. This time it fined a number of leading consumer electronics (...)

The EU Commission fines manufacturers over €111 million for restricting the ability of online retailers to set their own retail prices for a variety of widely-used consumer electronics products (Asus / Denon & Marantz / Philips / Pioneer)
Bona Law (San Diego)
Antitrust News: The European Commission imposes fines for the first time in 15 years as a result of online retail price restrictions (RPM)* On July 24, 2018, the European Commission fined manufacturers Asus, Denon & Marantz, Philips and Pioneer for over €111 million for restricting the (...)

The Paris Court of Appeal confirms the decision of the French Competition Authority but reduces fines in the parcel delivery services cartel case (Parcel delivery services cartel)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 19 July 2018, the Paris Court of Appeal (the “Court”) delivered a judgment in connection with the parcel delivery services cartel case (see VBB on Competition Law, Volume 2016, No. 1). The Court confirmed most of the findings of the French Competition Authority (“FCA”), including that the (...)

The EU General Court annuls a fine imposed by the Commission on cartellists in the sea shrimp sector due to lack of reasoning (Stührk Delikatessen)
McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Paris)
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Norton Rose Fulbright (Brussels)
In this difficult case, the EC had to reduce the fines calculated for each of the cartel participants so as to remain within the unalterable limit of 10 per cent of total worldwide group turnover. The EC claimed that it had sought to treat the various cartel participants equally in making the (...)

The German Competition Authority fines several steel companies for price-fixing and exchanging information (ArcelorMittal Commercial Long / Cologne / Dörrenberg Edelstahl / Engelskirchen Kind & Co. / Edelstahlwerke / Wiehl / Saarstahl / Völklingen / Schmidt + Clemens / Lindlar and Zapp Precision Metals / Schwerte)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt imposes first fines totalling approx. 205 million euros on special steel companies* The Bundeskartellamt has imposed fines totalling approx. 205 million euros on six special steel companies, a trade association and ten individuals for concluding price-fixing agreements and (...)

The UK Competition Authority extends its timetable of investigations on anti-competitive practices in the pharmaceutical sector
Rosenblatt Limited (London)
UK COMPETITION & MARKETS AUTHORITY PROVIDES UPDATES ON ITS PHARMACEUTICAL SECTOR INVESTIGATIONS* On 12th July 2018 Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) announced it was extending its timetable in relation to a number of its ongoing investigations involving anti-competitive practices in (...)

The Competition Commission of South Africa fines a media cartel for price fixing and unlawful trading conditions (Caxton / Independent Media)
Primerio (Washington)
MEDIA CARTEL EXPOSED AND FINED* Print media companies Independent Media and Caxton & CTP Publishers and Printers (“Caxton”) have agreed to pay an administrative penalties as well as an amount to the Economic Development Fund of over R8 million as part of two separate settlement agreements (...)

The French and German Competition Authorities launch a joint project on algorithms and their implications on competition
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
The French Autorité de la concurrence and the German Bundeskartellamt launch a joint project on algorithms and their implications on competition* Coming along with digitalization, algorithms are becoming more and more important and at the same time progressively sophisticated. Prominent (...)

The US District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania finds that a company was not part of a conspiracy to manipulate the supply of eggs and raise prices (In re Processed Egg Prods)
Dechert (Philadelphia)
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Dechert (Philadelphia)
The case began 10 years ago when a class of companies that purchase eggs sued the country’s leading egg producers, seeking more than $1 billion in damages. The plaintiffs claimed that the egg producers conspired to manipulate the supply and raise prices for eggs. Specifically, the buyers (...)

The Luxembourg Competition Authority allows a price fixing agreement between supermarkets as it could enhance competition (Epiceries du Luxembourg)
Arendt & Medernach (Luxembourg)
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Arendt & Medernach (Luxembourg)
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Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick (Brussels)
In June 2018, the Luxembourg Competition Council published a decision regarding forms of cooperation between competitors involving price fixing, one of the most manifest and serious restrictions of competition. The decision concerned a group of supermarkets who decided to market certain (...)

The Luxembourg Competition Authority allows a price-fixing agreement between competitors as it provides efficiency gains in the taxi market (Webtaxi)
Liedekerke Wolters Waelbroeck Kirkpatrick (Brussels)
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Arendt & Medernach (Luxembourg)
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Arendt & Medernach (Luxembourg)
In June 2018, the Luxembourg Competition Council published a decision regarding a cooperation between competitors involving price fixing, one of the most manifest and serious restrictions of competition. In the decision “Webtaxi”, the Competition Council found that a taxi reservation centre (...)

The Supreme Administrative Court of Lithuania upholds the decision of the National Competition Authority in a cinema cartel case (UAB Forum Cinemas)
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
Supreme Administrative Court upholds Council’s decision: Cinema cartels resulted in fewer discounts for consumers* The Supreme Administrative Court of Lithuania rejected the appeal by UAB Forum Cinemas against the Competition Council’s decision whereby the company was fined EUR 1,384,300 for (...)

The Indian Competition Authority dismisses allegations of collusion between a cement dealers’ association and cement manufacturers due to lack of evidence (Ramco / Kerala Cement Dealers’ Association KCDA)
Vaish Associates Advocates (New Delhi)
CCI closes investigation against Kerala cement dealers’ association and cement manufacturers* The CCI by its order dated May 24, 2018 has closed the investigation against Ramco Cements Ltd (‘Ramco’) and the Kerala Cement Dealers’ Association (‘KCDA’). The investigation by the Director-General (‘DG’) (...)

The French Competition Authority fines a professional syndicate of winemakers for an anticompetitive agreement (Syndicat général des vignerons réunis des Côtes du Rhône)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence fines the Syndicat général des vignerons réunis des Côtes du Rhône (the professional syndicate of Côte du Rhône winemakers) for an anticompetitive agreement* Based on a report submitted by the French Directorate General for Competition Policy, Consumer Affairs and Fraud (...)

The US DoJ indicts the CEO of a seafood company on price-fixing charges (Bumble Bee Foods)
Jones Day (San Francisco)
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Jones Day (Los Angeles)
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Jones Day (Washington DC)
The U.S. Department of Justice indicted Bumble Bee Foods CEO Christopher Lischewski on price-fixing charges. Lischewski is the first CEO to be charged for his role in the alleged U.S. conspiracy to fix the price of packaged seafood. The Northern District of California grand jury indictment (...)

The Hong Kong Competition Authority publishes a guide regarding a competition ordinance for the public sector
Hong Kong Competition Commission
Competition Commission Publishes Handy Guide to Competition Ordinance for Public Sector* The Competition Commission (Commission) today (11 May) published a handy “Guide to Competition Ordinance” (Guide) for the public sector to assist personnel from the government, public bodies and law (...)

The German Competition Authority fines potato and onion packaging companies up to €13.2 million for fixing prices (Böhmer / Kuhn)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt imposes fines totalling 13.2 million euros on potato and onion packaging companies* The Bundeskartellamt has imposed fines totalling 13.2 million euros on two potato and onion packaging companies for fixing prices in their supplies to the Metro group. The companies concerned (...)

The Indian Competition Authority fines battery manufacturers for cartel after a 6-year investigation including 2 leniency applications (Eveready Industries India / Indo National / Panasonic Energy India / Association of Indian Dry Cell Manufacturer)
Vaish Associates Advocates (New Delhi)
CCI Penalizes Batter Manufacturers’ Admitted Cartel - Decised Its Second Leniency Case* Competition Commission of India (CCI) by an order dated 19 April 2018, in its second decision on a leniency application, has awarded a 100 (One Hundred) per cent reduction in penalty to the leniency (...)

The Danish Competition Appeal Tribunal confirms the sanction imposed for participating in a cartel in the camping card market (Campingrådet)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Horizontal agreements in the framework of Campingraadet* The Danish Competition Appeal Tribunal has upheld the findings of the Danish Competition Council that the horizontal agreements described below, and entered into in the framework of the Danish umbrella organization “Campingrådet”, had as (...)

The UK Competition Authority disqualifies two company directors for their roles in price-fixing cartel (Abbott / Frost)
Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (London)
The UK Competition and Markets Authority (the ’CMA’) has secured the disqualification of two directors following an investigation into a cartel agreement by six estate agencies in the Burnham-on-Sea area to fix the minimum level of commission fees for the provision of traditional residential (...)

The Turkish Competition Board launches a formal investigation to determine if undertakings have engaged in a price fixing agreement based on evidences collected in an on-the-spot inspection (Ortosistem / Medifarm / Benlioğlu Dental / Eksen / Medikodental / Uysal / Dnt / MD / Modern Ortodonti)
Erdem & Erdem (Istanbul)
Introduction Decision numbered 18-09/157-77 and dated 29.03.2018 (“Decision”) of the Turkish Competition Board (“Board”) is critical with respect to evidence that has been obtained in on-the-spot investigations, because this is the first decision in which the Board had taken WhatsApp (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority fines 9 bar associations for issuing a collective price recommendation regarding lawyers’ professional fees (Bankia)
Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
The Spanish Competition Authority (“CNMC”) has fined 9 bar associations EUR 1.4 million for issuing a collective price recommendation regarding lawyers’ professional fees. The case was triggered by a complaint filed by Bankia as a consequence of the numerous claims filed by the bank’s (...)

The Turkish Competition Authority decides not to open an investigation against a company active in online sales of flowers, edible flowers and gifts following allegations of predatory pricing (Çiçek Sepeti)
ELIG Gürkaynak Attorneys-at-Law (Istanbul)
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ELIG Gürkaynak Attorneys-at-Law (Istanbul)
This case summary includes an analysis of the Turkish Competition Board’s (“Competition Board” or “Board”) Çiçek Sepeti decision (08.03.2018; 18-07/111-58). The Board reviewed the allegations put forward by Çiçek Satış A.Ş. (“Çiçek Satış”) against Çiçek Sepeti İnternet Hizmetleri A.Ş. (“Çiçek Sepeti”) (...)

The Indian Competition Authority reconsiders a price fixing case referred back from the Appellate Tribunal and imposes revised fines against airline companies for fixing fuel surcharge rates for cargo transportation (Jet Airways / InterGlobe Aviation / Spice Jet)
Vaish Associates Advocates (New Delhi)
Competition Commission of India (“CCI”) imposes penalty on Jet Airways, IndiGo Airlines and Spicejet for fixing fuel surcharge rates* By way of an order dated March 7, 2018, the CCI has imposed a cumulative penalty of approx. INR 54 Crores on Jet Airways (India) Ltd (‘Jet Airways’), InterGlobe (...)

The Indian Competition Authority decides to examine the algorithm used in determining airline ticket prices in order to determine whether the airline companies have engaged in price-fixing practices (Jet Airways / InterGlobe Aviation)
National University of Study and Research in Law (Ranchi)
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National University of Study and Research in Law (Ranchi)
The Competition Commission of India (“CCI”), anti-trust watchdog of India has lately sprung up in action by tightening the noose around the anti-competitive practices in the aviation sector. Recently in an incident concerning revising and fixing fuel surcharge (FSC) rates by a few airline (...)

The US District Court for the Northern District of California denies a motion for class certification for a proposed class of indirect purchasers of lithium ion batteries (Lithium Ion Batteries)
McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
Indirect purchaser plaintiffs’ motion for class certification in a lithium ion battery suit was denied for failing to show concrete evidence linking increased input costs to increased end-product prices; theoretical inference is not enough. What happened: The US District Court for the Northern (...)

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

The Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court increases the fine against a drugstore company for vertical price fixing (Rossmann)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Vertical price fixing - Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court raises fine against drugstore chain Rossmann* Yesterday the Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court imposed a fine of 30 million euros against Dirk Rossmann GmbH (’Rossmann’). With its decision the Court has significantly raised the fine imposed by (...)

The EU Commission fines maritime car carriers and car parts suppliers in three separate cartel cases (MOL / NYK / "K" Line / Wwl-Eukor / Csav, Denso / Bosch / NGK / TRW / Continental)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission fines maritime car carriers and car parts suppliers a total of €546 million in three separate cartel settlements* In three separate decisions, the European Commission has fined four maritime car carriers €395 million, two suppliers of spark plugs €76 million, and two (...)

The EU Commission fines €546 million two maritime car carriers and four car parts suppliers in three separate cartel settlements (MOL / NYK / "K" Line / Wwl-Eukor / Csav / Denso / Bosch / NGK / TRW / Continental)
Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gómez-Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
Four maritime car carriers, two suppliers of spark plugs and two suppliers of braking systems have been fined EUR 395 million, EUR 76 million and EUR 75 million respectively, in the framework of three separate cartel settlement decisions adopted by the European Commission. With regard to the (...)

The Mexican Federal Economic Competition Commission fines five condom and catheter suppliers for bid rigging in the public health sector after a four-year investigation into the latex industry (Galeno / Adex / Holiday de México / Trenkes / Dentilab)
Ritch Mueller (Mexico City)
On 8 February 2018, Mexico’s Federal Economic Competition Commission’s (COFECE or Commission) fined five condom and catheter suppliers 112 million pesos (approximately €4.91 million) for rigging bids in Mexico’s public health sector. Further statements of objections and decisions regarding bid (...)

The EU Court of Justice upholds fines imposed by the Commission on cartel participants in the air freight forwarding sector (Schenker)
McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Paris)
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Norton Rose Fulbright (Brussels)
In four separate judgments of 1 February 2018, the CJEU upheld fines imposed by the EC on freight forwarders for participating in cartels in the international air freight forwarding services sector. The case is interesting for its consideration of (i) the fact that the EC relied on evidence (...)

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

The US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit issues a decision holding that purchasers have standing to seek damages from suppliers accused of price-fixing (Processed Egg Products)
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (Washington DC)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (New York)
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Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom (New York)
Last week, in In re: Processed Egg Products Antitrust Litigation, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit issued a decision holding that purchasers of processed egg products have standing to seek damages from egg suppliers accused of price-fixing in violation of Section 1 of the Sherman (...)

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

The Russian Competition Authority opens a proceeding against a cartel that used auction robots (Egmed)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
Case against a cartel that used auction robots* FAS opened a case upon signs of “digital” collusion at medical auctions FAS suspects that bidders at procurement for supplies of expendables for coronary angiography and stenting, “VALERIA” Ltd. and “Egmed” Ltd. used special software, tuned to (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Council finds occasion wear shops to have engaged in cartel activity due to their imposition of fixed dress try-on fees for customers (Occasion wear shops cartel)
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
CARTEL AMONG OCCASION WEAR SHOPS RESULTED IN HIGHER PRICES FOR CONSUMERS* The Competition Council found a number of occasion wear shops operating in Vilnius guilty of a cartel that set a fixed dress try-on fee for customers. Firms received fines ranging from EUR 1 to EUR 1,960, with seven out (...)

The French Competition Authority fines three leading manufacturers of PVC and linoleum floor covering for cartel (Tarkett)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité has imposed sanctions totalling €302 million on the three leading manufacturers of PVC and linoleum floor covering, as a penalty for price fixing among other pratices.* Background Acting on information submitted by the Directorate General for Competition Policy, Consumer Affairs (...)

The French Competition Authority fines three undertakings for price fixing in the linoleum floor sector and changes its competition compliance policy (Forbo / Tarkett / Gerflor)
Clifford Chance (Paris)
Leading French PVC and linoleum floor covering manufacturers, Forbo, Tarkett - both leniency applicants - and Gerflor together with the sector’s trade association have been sanctioned by the French Competition Authority for having implemented anticompetitive practices over more than two decades. (...)

The French Competition Authority imposes a €302 m fine on three leading companies in the PVC and Linoleum floor coverings sector for price-fixing, sharing commercially sensitive information and signing a non-compete agreement on environmental performance advertising (Forbo / Gerflor / Tarkett / SFEC)
Franklin (Paris)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Paris)
SIGNIFICANT FINE IMPOSED BY THE FRENCH COMPETITION AUTHORITY IN FLOOR COVERINGS CARTEL* On October 18, 2017, the French Competition Authority (the “FCA”) imposed a EUR 302 million fine on the three leading companies in the PVC and linoleum floor coverings sector; Forbo, Gerflor and Tarkett, as (...)

The Hellenic Competition Authority fines six undertakings active in the wholesale trade of luxury cosmetics for cartel (NOTOS COM)
Hellenic Competition Authority (Athens)
Prohibition of competition law by wholesalers of luxury cosmetics* Following an ex officio investigation, The Grand Chamber of the HCC decided, by majority vote regarding the number of the undertakings involved, that six undertakings active in the wholesale trade of luxury cosmetics (namely, (...)

The Moldovan Competition Authority prosecutes currency exchange bureaus for fixing the exchange rates (Activ Prim / Bartolomeu / Dragotin Prim / Lavronix / Lozcoz)
University of Macau - Faculty of Law (Macau)
On 28 September 2017 the Competition Council (CC) established the existence of the price fixing cartel on the market for in-cash currency exchange transactions on the basis of the high degree of coincidence of exchange rates applied by the undertakings concerned. Foreign exchange transactions (...)

The EU Commission fines several truck manufacturers for cartel (Scania)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission fines Scania €880 million for participating in trucks cartel* The European Commission has found that Scania broke EU antitrust rules. It colluded for 14 years with five other truck manufacturers on truck pricing and on passing on the costs of new technologies to meet (...)

The US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit affirms the District Court judgment for titanium dioxide purchaser on the grounds that plaintiff lacked sufficient evidence to allege a conspiracy to fix prices (Valspar / DuPont)
McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
What Happened: On October 2, 2017, the US Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit unsealed its opinion in Valspar Corp. v. E.I. Du Pont De Nemours & Co., No. 16-1345 2017 WL 4364317 (3d Cir. Sept. 14, 2017) in which the court affirmed the district court’s grant of summary judgment for (...)

The Indian Competition Authority reconsiders and again exonerates air transport association from accusations of anticompetitive agreements and price fixing (Air Cargo Agents Association of India / IATA International Air Transport Association)
Vaish Associates Advocates (New Delhi)
CCI dismisses allegations of cartelization against Air Cargo Agents Association of India* The Competition Commission of India (CCI) vide order dated 12.09.2017 has dismissed allegations of cartelization against the Air Cargo Agents Association of India. The Informant, the International Air (...)

The Chinese NDRC proposes new rules to deal with perceived anti-competitive practices in the pharmaceutical industry
Hogan Lovells (Beijing)
China proposes new rules to address perceived anti-competitive practices n the pharmaceutical industry* On 14 August 2017, the National Development and Reform Commission (“NDRC“) released a draft of the Guidelines on Pricing Conduct by Business Operators for Drugs in Shortage and Active (...)

The Hong Kong Competition Authority issues a complaint before the Competition Tribunal against ten construction and engineering undertakings accused of engaging in a cartel
Hong Kong Competition Commission
Competition Commission takes market sharing and price fixing case to Competition Tribunal* The Competition Commission (Commission) has today commenced proceedings in the Competition Tribunal (Tribunal) against ten construction and engineering companies, namely W. Hing Construction Company (...)

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

The US District Court for the Southern District of Texas files an information due to conspiracy to fix the prices in the silicone wristbands and lanyards sector (Zaappaaz)
McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Dusseldorf)
Azim Makanojiya founded Zaappaaz Inc. as a nineteen-year-old university student and quickly turned it into a multi-million dollar business. WHAT HAPPENED: On Tuesday, August 7, online retailer Zaappaaz Inc. and its twenty-nine-year-old president and founder, Azim Makanojiya, agreed to plead (...)

The Chinese Competition Authority fines several industry associations for price-fixing (Paper manufacturers and Power companies)
Jones Day (Beijing)
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Jones Day (Beijing)
Historically, most industry associations in China were quasi-governmental and served as forums through which member companies coordinated their activities, in some cases including price-setting. For this reason, anticompetitive behavior through industry associations is even more of a salient (...)

The Indian Competition Authority finds a professional committee in transportation and its 4 participating associations guilty of price fixing in the market for coastal container services and issues a cease and desist with no fine because conduct was limited and stopped before investigation (Cochin Port Trust / Container Trailer Owners Coordination Commission)
Vaish Associates Advocates (New Delhi)
CCI finds Container Trailer Owners Coordination Commission and its four participating associations guilty of anticompetitive conduct* The Competition Commission of India (“CCI”) vide dated 01.08.2017 has found Container Trailer Owners Coordination Committee (‘Committee’) and its four participating (...)

The Chinese NDRC fines two pharmaceutical companies for excessive pricing and refusal to deal (Zhejiang Second Pharma / Tianjin Handewei Pharmaceuticals)
University of Melbourne
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Hogan Lovells (Beijing)
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University of Melbourne
On 31 July 2017, the NDRC publicly announced its decision to sanction Zhejiang Second Pharma (an affiliate of a central-level SOE under the purview of the State-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission (SASAC)) and Tianjin Handewei Pharmaceuticals for abusing their dominance. In (...)

The US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit dismisses the indictments of two individuals accused of playing a role in the LIBOR case and clarifies the Fifth Amendment law in international cartels (Allen)
McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Dusseldorf)
SECOND CIRCUIT CLARIFIES FIFTH AMENDMENT LAW, WITH IMPLICATIONS FOR US PROSECUTION OF INTERNATIONAL CARTELS* On July 19, 2017, the Second Circuit vacated the convictions and dismissed the indictments of two individuals accused of playing a role in the manipulation of the London Interbank (...)

The Moldovan Competition Authority closes an investigation into alleged price fixing on the market for home appliances because of economic justifications (Rolling International)
University of Macau - Faculty of Law (Macau)
On 14 July 2017 the Competition Council of the Republic of Moldova (CC) closed the investigation into the alleged price fixing on the market for household electric appliances due to the presence of economic justifications. In the early 2015 the media discussed an unusual price spike on the (...)

The German Competition Authority issues a guidance note on the prohibition of vertical price fixing in the food retail sector
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt publishes guidance note on the prohibition of vertical price fixing in the food retail sector* Today the Bundeskartellamt has published a guidance note on the prohibition of vertical price fixing in the brick-and-mortar food retail sector. The aim of the guidance note is to (...)

The German Federal Cartel Office publishes a guidance paper on the prohibition of resale price maintenance with focus on the food and retail sector
McDermott Will & Emery (Dusseldorf)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Paris)
GERMAN ANTITRUST AUTHORITY ISSUES GUIDELINES ON RESALE PRICE MAINTENANCE* On 12 July 2017, the German Federal Cartel Office (FCO) published a guidance paper (Guidance Paper) on the prohibition of resale price maintenance (RPM). The Guidance Paper has a particular focus on the food retail (...)

The German Competition Authority fines two manufacturers of industrial batteries and their representatives for cartel (Hawker)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt imposes fines totalling approx. 28 million euros on manufacturers of industrial batteries* The Bundeskartellamt has imposed fines totalling around 28 million euros on two manufacturers of industrial batteries and their representatives for agreeing between them to levy the (...)

The OECD holds a roundtable to address issues on algorithms and collusion
Norton Rose Fulbright (Brussels)
OECD workshop addresses algorithms and collusion issues* On June 21-23, the OECD held a roundtable on the theme of “Algorithms and Collusion,” as part of a wider work stream on competition in the digital economy. The OECD roundtable reflects a shift in the debate over the antitrust implications (...)

The US FTC files an administrative complaint against a state licensing board for unreasonably restraining price competition for real estate appraisal services provided to appraisal management companies in Louisiana (LREAB)
McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
This week, the Federal Trade Commission filed an administrative complaint against the Louisiana Real Estate Appraisers Board (LREAB). This complaint is the FTC’s first against a state licensing board since it prevailed in the Supreme Court in the decision in NC State Board of Dental Examiners v. (...)

The Irish Central Criminal Court fines a company executive for his participation in a cartel and imposes a suspended prison sentence (Aston Carpets)
McCann FitzGerald (Dublin)
Ireland - Hard-core cartel offender gets €7,500 fine and suspended sentence* Following a guilty plea to criminal bid-rigging and obstruction charges, a company director was fined €7,500 by an Irish judge on 31 May and sentenced to three months’ imprisonment (suspended – meaning no jail time). (...)

The US FTC reaches settlement agreement with a company over challenged professional association rules due to restriction of competition among its organist and choral conductor members (AGO)
McDermott Will & Emery (Chicago)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
The two current commissioners of the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) approved a final order and consent agreement with the American Guild of Organists (AGO) after a public comment period of two months. The FTC alleged that the AGO violated Section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission Act by (...)

The Croatian Competition Authority accepts remedies proposed by companies operating in the marine engines market (Duing / Fred Bobek)
Croatian Competition Agency (Zagreb)
Accepted Commitments by Duing and Fred Bobek* The Croatian Competition Agency (CCA) closed two proceedings for the establishment of prohibited agreements by accepting commitments proposed by the parties concerned – Duing d.o.o. from Viškovo and Fred Bobek d.o.o. from Vodice active in the sales (...)

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

The US DoJ charges two senior vice presidents company for price fixing of shelf-stable tuna fish (Bumble Bee Foods)
Mc Dermott Will & Emery (Irvine)
Bumble Bee Foods, and two of its senior vice presidents, have recently pled guilty to US Department of Justice (DOJ) charges that they engaged in a conspiracy to fix prices of shelf-stable tuna fish sold in the United States from 2011 to 2013. Bumble Bee agreed to pay a $25 million criminal (...)

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

The Italian Competition Authority finds an anti-competitive agreement in the banking sector but does not impose any fine (ABI / SEDA)
Giannino SI (Monserrato)
The Italian Competition Authority (ICA) has recently closed an Article 101 TFEU investigation it had opened in the case ABI/SEDA by an infringement decision. The ICA found the parties to have put in place an anti-competitive agreement in the banking sector. Though the agreement was qualified as (...)

The EU Court of Justice dismisses appeal against a judgment of the General Court which upheld the EU Commission’s decision finding that a company participated in an illegal price-fixing cartel (Exotic Fruits cartel case)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 27 April 2017, the Court of Justice of the European Union (“ECJ”) dismissed an appeal lodged by banana importer Pacific Fruit (and its parent companies) against a judgment of the General Court (“GC”), which upheld the European Commission’s decision finding that Pacific Fruit had participated in (...)

The EU Court of Justice upholds use of evidence from a national authority other than a member state competition authority (Pacific Fruit)
Jones Day (Brussels)
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Jones Day (Brussels)
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Jones Day (Brussels)
The European Court of Justice ("CoJ") has upheld the European Commission’s use of evidence transmitted by a national authority other than a Member State competition authority in a cartel investigation. The CoJ ruled on April 27, 2017, that the national authority properly transmitted such (...)

The Swiss Federal Supreme Court publishes reasons for its judgment in Colgate-Palmolive Europe
Niederer Kraft & Frey
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Niederer Kraft & Frey (Zurich)
Major re-interpretation of Swiss competition law: price-fixing, quantity limiting and market allocating agreements are per se illegal regardless of effect and may lead to direct sanctions* On 21 April 2017, after almost 10 months, the Swiss Federal Supreme Court published reasons for its (...)

The German Competition Authority issues an interim report on conditions for the supply of raw milk
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Interim report on conditions for the supply of raw milk* The Bundeskartellamt has today published an interim report on its administrative proceeding concerning conditions of supply for raw milk. In the report the authority presents key results of its investigations so far and offers initial (...)

The EU Commission fines six undertakings that supplied air conditioning and engine cooling components to car manufacturers (Thermal Systems Cartel)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 8 March 2017, the European Commission announced that it had imposed fines under the cartel settlement procedure totalling € 155 million on six companies that supplied air conditioning and engine cooling components to car manufacturers. The companies involved, Behr, Calsonic, Denso, Panasonic, (...)

The EU Commission carries out unannounced inspections in the sector of kraft paper and industrial paper sacks
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission confirms unannounced inspections in sector of kraft paper and industrial paper sacks* The European Commission can confirm that on 7 March 2017 its officials carried out unannounced inspections at the premises of several companies active in the sector of kraft paper and (...)

The EU Court of Justice dismisses appeals against the General Court’s judgement in a cartel case confirming the responsibility of undertakings for the actions of their representative (Paraffin Wax)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
Under EU case law, an undertaking can be held responsible for the actions of a person who is authorised to act on its behalf, regardless of any action or knowledge on the part of the managers of that undertaking. Consequently, the Commission may impose fines on an undertaking if it has shown (...)

The Croatian Competition Authority fines an undertaking for resale price maintenance in the white goods and small household appliances market (Gorenje)
Croatian Competition Agency (Zagreb)
Gorenje Zagreb fined more than HRK 1.5 mil for resale price maintenance* The Croatian Competition Agency (CCA) imposed a fine on the undertaking Gorenje Zagreb amounting to HRK 1.557,000. The CCA found within the proceeding that Gorenje Zagreb entered into a prohibited agreement containing (...)

The Hellenic Competition Authority issues its first decision under the new simplified settlement procedure (Hondos)
Prentoulis Gerakini Law Partnership (Athens)
February 2017 marks the first decision of the Hellenic Competition Commission (HCC) under the terms of the new simplified Settlement Procedure. The case The HCC settled a case against eight companies of the HONDOS "group" (run by different family members) in the beauty and cosmetics market (...)

The Hellenic Competition Authority decides to settle a price-fixing case in the beauty and broader cosmetics sector (Hondos)
Hellenic Competition Authority (Athens)
Settlement of price-fixing case involving HONDOS in the beauty and broader cosmetics sector* By its unanimous Decision No. 636/2017, the Grand Chamber of the Hellenic Competition Commission (HCC) decided to settle a case against eight (8) companies controlled by HONDOS family members in the (...)

The German Competition Authority issues a a draft guidance note on vertical price fixing in the brick-and-mortar food retail sector
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Publication of guidance note on the prohibition of vertical price fixing in the food retail sector - public consultation* oday the Bundeskartellamt published a draft guidance note on vertical price fixing in the brick-and-mortar food retail sector. Interested parties are invited to submit (...)

The German Federal Cartel Office publishes a draft guidance note on the prohibition of vertical price fixing in the brick-and-mortar food retail sector
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 25 January 2017, the German Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) published a draft guidance note on the prohibition of vertical price fixing in the brick-and-mortar food retail sector. The guidance note follows proceedings concluded in December last year, in which the FCO imposed fines amounting to € (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority clears a dual pricing system (Pfizer / Cofares)
Callol, Coca & Asociados (Madrid)
On 19 January 2017 the Spanish Competition Authority (SCA) issued a decision clearing PFIZER of antitrust charges and blessing PFIZER’s dual pricing system (SCA Decision). In 2009, the SCA decided (First Decision) to close the antitrust investigation against COMPAÑÍA FARMACÉUTICA ESPAÑOLA, S.A. (...)

The Italian Competition Authority takes into account the compliance programs of companies in setting up the fines for having implemented anticompetitive agreement in the home ventilotherapy and home oxygentherapy supply services sector (Medicale / Medicair Italia / Medigas Italia / Sapio Life / Vitalaire Italia / Viviso...)
McDermott Will & Emery (Paris)
Compliance Programs – The Italian Competition Authority Highlights the Importance of an Effective Implementation and Update* On 19 January 2017, the Italian Competition Authority (the Authority) issued a decision concerning alleged anticompetitive agreements in the home ventilotherapy and home (...)

The EU Court of Justice confirms the EU Commission decision on the animal feed phosphates cartel (Timab Industries)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission welcomes Court of Justice judgment on Animal Feed Phosphates cartel* The European Commission welcomes today’s judgment by the EU Court of Justice dismissing in its entirety Timab’s appeal against an earlier General Court ruling. The General Court (case T-456/10) had upheld (...)

The German Competition Authority fines furniture manufacturers for vertical price fixing (Aeris)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt imposes fines on account of vertical price fixing in the sale of furniture* The Bundeskartellamt has concluded its cartel proceedings against furniture manufacturers for enforcing resale price maintenance on retailers. Fines totalling 4.43 million euros were imposed on the (...)

The EU Court of Justice confirms that the Commission has a considerable margin of discretion to revise a proposed fine upwards concerning companies that have withdrawn from a settlement procedure (Timab Industries)
United Kingdom’s Competition Authority - CMA (London)
The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) Confirms the Commission’s Approach to Hybrid Settlements* The case follows on from the Commission’s Animal Feed Phosphates cartel decision pursuant to which fines totalling €176 million were imposed on a number of producers of animal feed for (...)

The Finnish Supreme Administrative Court fines a milk producer for predatory pricing in the national fresh milk markets (Valio)
European Commission (Brussels)
The Supreme Administrative Court considered Valio’s milk pricing a violation of the Competition Act* The Supreme Administrative Court considered Valio’s milk pricing a violation of the Competition Act and ordered a penalty payment of EUR 70 million. In 2012, the FCCA deemed Valio guilty of (...)

The Bulgarian Supreme Administrative Court inflicts a record fine for prohibited vertical agreements within a selective distribution system of cars (Hyundai)
Tsvetkova Bebov Komarevski (Sofia)
After almost a 4-year appeal procedure, in December 2016 the Supreme Administrative Court of the Republic of Bulgaria (the “Supreme Court”), acting as a court of first instance, confirmed one of the biggest fines ever imposed by the Bulgarian Commission for Protection of Competition (the “CPC”) (...)

The Polish Competition Authority fines ski equipment wholesaler for vertical pricing restraints (Fordex)
WKB Wierciński Kwieciński Baehr (Warsaw)
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Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer (London)
In its decision in Case DOK-1/2016 of 23 December 2016, the President of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (the “OCCP”) imposed a fine of PLN 72,345 (approx. EUR 16,500) on a ski equipment wholesaler Przedsiębiorstwo Produkcyjno-Handlowe Fordex sp. z o.o. (“Fordex”), for fixing the (...)

The German Competition Authority ends proceedings against a dominant firm on the antennas market (Funkturm)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt ends proceedings against Deutsche Funkturm after pricing structure amendments* The Bundeskartellamt has terminated the administrative proceedings which it initiated against Deutsche Funkturm GmbH, Münster in January 2015. In the proceedings the authority investigated suspected (...)

The Polish Competition Authority fines gas boilers and water heaters producer for vertical price fixing (Termet)
WKB Wierciński Kwieciński Baehr (Warsaw)
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WKB Wierciński Kwieciński Baehr (Warsaw)
In its decision of 19 December 2016, the Polish Competition Authority (Prezes Urzędu Ochrony Konkurencji i Konsumentów, hereinafter referred to as the “OCCP President” or the “PCA”) fined Termet S.A. the amount of PLN 212,919.00 (approximately EUR 49,000.00) for imposing fixed resale prices (Resale (...)

The German Competition Authority fines firms in the food retail sector for vertical price fixing (Neumünster)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Fine proceedings for vertical price fixing in the German food retail sector concluded* The Bundeskartellamt has concluded its last three pending proceedings concerning vertical price fixing in the food retail sector. The authority imposed fines totalling 18.3 million euros on EDEKA (...)

The Italian Competition Authority discovers two price-fixing arrangements in the market for the real estate brokerage services but decides not to fine the anti-competitive conducts as they were not a serious competition breach (Usi in Materia di Mediazione Immobiliare)
Giannino SI (Monserrato)
By the recent decision handed down in the case Usi in Materia di Mediazione Immobiliare (UMMI) the Italian Competition Authority (ICA) has closed an antitrust investigation by finding two price-fixing arrangements in the market for the real estate brokerage services agents implemented by two (...)

The French Competition Authority issues an opinion following its sector inquiry on hearing aids
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Sector-wide Inquiry on Hearing Aids- the Autorité’s Findings* The Autorité recommends separating the initial purchase of the hearing aid (including immediate fitting and setting during the first year) from the purchase of subsequent follow-up services. It also proposes removing the numerus (...)

The EU Commission fines three banks for cartel on the euro interest rate derivatives market (Crédit Agricole / HSBC / JPMorgan Chase)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission fines Crédit Agricole, HSBC and JPMorgan Chase € 485 million for euro interest rate derivatives cartel* The European Commission has fined Crédit Agricole, HSBC and JPMorgan Chase, a total of € 485 million for participating in a cartel in euro interest rate derivatives. The (...)

The Danish Competition Authority considers that agreement between service providers on their subscription price for service on natural gas boilers is anticompetitive (HMN)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Denmark: The Danish Competition Council finds that agreement between service providers on their subscription price for service on natural gas boilers is illegal.* On November 30 2016, The Danish Competition Council (“DCC”) found that HMN Naturgas I/S (“HMN”), DEBRA – Energibranchen (“DEBRA”), (...)

The Hong Kong Competition Authority orders two professional associations to modify several provisions in their respective codes of conduct (HKIA / HKIP)
Hong Kong Competition Commission
Competition Commission calls upon two professional associations to rectify practices which raise competition concerns* The Competition Commission (Commission) today (28 November 2016) published an advisory bulletin calling upon two professional associations, namely, the Hong Kong Institute of (...)

The Advocate General Kokott delivers her opinion on an appeal lodged before the EU Court of Justice against a judgment upholding the Commission’s decision in finding an illegal price-fixing cartel (Pacific Fruit)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
Summary On 17 November 2016, Advocate General (“AG”) Kokott delivered her opinion on an appeal lodged before the European Court of Justice (“ECJ”) by Pacific Fruit (and its parent companies) against a judgment of the General Court (“GC”) upholding the European Commission’s decision finding an (...)

The Turkish Competition Authority publishes its reasoned decision on the investigations conducted upon the allegation of resale price fixing in the auto gas market (Aygaz)
ELIG Gürkaynak Attorneys-at-Law (Istanbul)
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ELIG Gürkaynak Attorneys-at-Law (Istanbul)
This case note analyses the Turkish Competition Board’s (“Board”) Aygaz decision dated 16.11.2016 with No. 16-39/659-294. The Board assessed allegations that Aygaz and its wholly-owned subsidiary, Mogaz A.Ş. (“Mogaz”), had engaged in resale price maintenance (“RPM”). Background The Board initiated (...)

The Indian Competition Appellate Tribunal rejects the Competition Authority’s investigation conclusion due to failure to address a significant part of the plaintiff’s original suit (Air Cargo Agents Association of India / IATA International Air Transport Association)
Vaish Associates Advocates (New Delhi)
Competition Appellate Tribunal (COMPAT) quashes CCI order and directs fresh investigation into alleged anti-competitive practices of International Air Transport Association (IATA)* COMPAT, by its order dated November 15, 2016, has set-aside the order of Competition Commission of India (CCI) (...)

The US DoJ and FTC issue guidance signalling that they will bring enforcement actions for wage-fixing and no-poaching agreements under federal antitrust law
Morgan Lewis (Silicon Valley)
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Morgan Lewis (Washington)
The DOJ will now treat wage-fixing and no-poaching agreements criminally. On October 20, the US Department of Justice (DOJ) and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued guidance (the Guidance) signaling that they will bring enforcement actions for wage-fixing and no-poaching agreements under (...)

The German Competition Authority cancels fines against sausage manufacturers due to restructuring measures (Zur Mühlen Group)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Proceedings against companies of ClemensTönnies group concluded – fines of 128 million euros cancelled due to restructuring measures* The Bundeskartellamt has closed its fine proceedings against two companies of the Zur Mühlen Group. The fines totalling 128 million euros which were imposed on (...)

The Chinese NDRC and Beijing Development Reform Commission investigate the industries of Housing and Urban-Rural development finding quality control price policy breaches
Hogan Lovells (Beijing)
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University of Melbourne
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China Competition Bulletin (Beijing)
The NDRC and the Beijing Development and Reform Commission investigated the concrete industry management practices of the Beijing Municipal Commission of Housing and Urban-Rural Development (Beijing Development Commission), in particular its quality control price policy. On 24 December 2014, (...)

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

The French Competition Authority fines several modelling agencies for cartel (L’Agence)
French Competition Authority (Paris)
The Autorité fines for anticompetitive agreement the modelling sector’s main professional union and 37 modelling agencies* In brief The Autorité de la concurrence today issues a decision under which it fines the main professional union of modelling agencies, the SYNAM, for having, between (...)

The Indian Competition Authority dismisses allegations of bid rigging against PVC vinyl flooring manufacturers (Responsive Industries / RMG Polyvinyl India / Premier Polyfilms)
Vaish Associates Advocates (New Delhi)
Competition Commission of India (CCI) dismisses allegations of bid-rigging against in supply of PVC Vinyl flooring to railways* CCI by its order dated September 21, 2016 has dismissed allegation against manufacturers of PVC Vinyl flooring in relation to supply of “PVC Flooring (Vinyl) width (...)

The US Court of Appeal for the Second Circuit reverses a price-fixing cartel verdict against Chinese defendants on international comity grounds (Vitamin C)
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Rome)
Second Circuit reverses a price-fixing cartel verdict against Chinese defendants on international comity grounds* On 20 September 2016, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit (the “Appeals court”) in New York reversed a federal district court judgment in an antitrust lawsuit (...)

The US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit vacates and reverses an antitrust verdict in a historic first case for a Chinese government agency to appear as amicus in US court and inform the court of applicable Chinese law (Vitamin C)
Baker McKenzie (Brussels)
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Baker McKenzie (New York)
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Baker McKenzie (Washington D.C.)
The United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit (the Second Circuit) in New York has vacated and reversed a USD 147 million antitrust verdict against a Chinese vitamin C manufacturer and its holding company, ruling that the district court should have granted Defendants’ original motion (...)

The Romanian Competition Council carries out unannounced inspections on the market of movies distribution to cinemas
Romanian Competition Council (Bucharest)
The Competition Council had carried out inspections within the investigation on movies distribution to cinemas* The Competition Council had carries out an unannounced inspection at Imedia Plus Group SA, company that operates www.cinemagia.ro. The inspection has been carried out within the (...)

The Australian government proposes a competition law amendment enabling notification for resale price maintenance
Jones Day (Sydney)
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Jones Day (Sydney)
Australia experiments with a "third way" on resale price restrictions* Resale price maintenance (RPM) occurs when a manufacture or distributor and a wholesaler prevents a retail or distributor from selling below a specified price Since the US Federal Courts decided Leegin in 2007 there has (...)

The Polish Competition Authority fines infertility treatment providers for price fixing (Polish Centres of Infertility Treatment and Reproduction Development)
WKB Wierciński Kwieciński Baehr (Warsaw)
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WKB Wierciński Kwieciński Baehr (Warsaw)
In its decision dated 1 September 2016, the President of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (hereinafter the “OCCP President”) fined the Association of Polish Centres of Infertility Treatment and Reproduction Development (hereinafter the “Association”) for fixing prices of offers for (...)

The Indian Competition Authority re-imposes fines on 11 major cement manufacturers for forming a cartel (Builders’ Association of India / Cement Manufacturers’ Association)
Vaish Associates Advocates (New Delhi)
Competition Commission of India (CCI) re-imposes penalty on 11 cement companies for cartelisation* CCI by its order dated August 31, 2016 has re-imposed penalties on 11 cement manufacturers and Cement Manufacturers Association(CMA) for violation of Section 3(3)(a) and 3(3)(b) of the Act. The (...)

The US Court of Appeal for the Sixth Circuit reaffirms necessity for recoupment in predatory pricing complaints (Energy Conversion)
Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton (Rome)
Sixth Circuit dismisses a predatory pricing complaint in the solar panel industry* On 18 August 2016 the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, dismissed a predatory pricing complaint filed by Energy Conversion, a solar panel manufacturer based in the United States, against (...)