*This article is an automatic translation of the original article, provided here for your convenience. Read the original article. – US Supreme Court, 24 May 2010, American Needle v. National Football League, No. 08-661 In a relatively infrequent occurrence, on 24 May 2010, the United States Supreme Court issued a unanimous ruling (9/9) in a 20-page decision. This ruling clarifies the definition of the contours of business in US antitrust law by putting an end to global agreements between a sports league and an equipment manufacturer, also confirming the applicability of competition rules to the field of products derived from sports activities, under certain conditions. In doing so, the Supreme Court reversed a decision of the Federal Court for the Northern District of Illinois that
CASE COMMENTS : US COMPETITION CASE LAW - US SUPREME COURT - CONCERTED ACTION - RESTRAINT OF TRADE - JOINT VENTURE - AGREEMENT - RULE OF REASON - FUNCTIONAL APPROACH - INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LICENSING - EXCLUSIVE LICENSING - SPORTS ACTIVITIES AND ANTITRUST IMMUNITY
Refusing to grant antitrust immunity: The US Supreme Court reverses and remands a case where the national football league and its 32 member teams had granted an exclusive license for the manufacture of caps, refusing to grant antitrust immunity considering that the league and its members do not possess the unitary decisionmaking quality nor the single aggregation of economic power characteristic of independent action and considers that the case should be rejudged under the rule of reason (American Needle ; National Football League)
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