Price abuses

Anticompetitive practices

The UK Competition Authority secures disqualification of pharmaceutical company director for 5 years for breaching competition law (Amit Patel / Auden McKenzie / Amilco)
British 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 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 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 first judgment on pecuniary penalties in Hong Kong competition law regime (On Tat Estate 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 new 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 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)
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Hogan Lovells (Munich)
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 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 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
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 United Publishing (Holdings) Limited (“Companies”); and an individual Mr. (...)

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 French Competition Authority imposes a record-breaking fine of €1.1 billion on a big tech company 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 totalling €1.1 billion on a big tech company 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 Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne
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 US DOJ warns businesses against price fixing, bid rigging, and market sharing in the manufacturing, distribution, and 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 California, New York, and Washington Attorneys General 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 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 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)
Gomez Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gomez Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gomez 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)
Autorité de la concurrence (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)
Autorité de la concurrence (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 China 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)
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 alternative sources of supply for antitrust complaints, China has circulated a draft rule to financially incentivise employee (...)

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 Commission orders an investigation against online travel agencies for imposing vertical restrictions and abuse of dominance (MakeMyTrip / OYO)
Trilegal (Mumbai)
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Trilegal (Bengalore)
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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)
British 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)
Gomez Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gomez Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gomez 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 (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 Commission fines a manufacturer of sport 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 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 Board investigates into 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 Bureau 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 and Chambre interdépartementale des notaires de Franche-Comté)
Autorité de la concurrence (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)
British 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 Düsseldorf 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)
Gomez Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gomez Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gomez 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)
British 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 (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 (Brussels)
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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)
Desogus Law Office (Cagliari)
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 in 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)
British 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 Board 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)
McDermott Will & Emery (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
Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner (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 Free
British 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)
British 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 (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) Free
Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner (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) Free
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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McDermott Will & Emery (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
Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner (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 Free
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) Free
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 (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 to competition ordinance for 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 (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)
Gowling WLG (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)
Gomez Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gomez Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gomez 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 Board 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 (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 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)
Gomez Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gomez Acebo & Pombo (Brussels)
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Gomez 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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McDermott Will & Emery (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)
Autorité de la concurrence (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)
McDermott Will & Emery (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 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 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
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 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 (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 Commission launches proceedings before the Competition Tribunal against ten construction and engineering undertakings accused of cartel (Sun Spark)
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) Free
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 (Düsseldorf)
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 (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 Appeal 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 (Düsseldorf)
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
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 (Düsseldorf)
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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 Free
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 Belgian Competition Authority fines the members of a bid-rigging cartel in the context of public tenders for a railway infrastructure (ABB / AEG / Siemens / Schneider / Sécheron)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 2 May 2017, the Belgian Competition Authority (“BCA”) found that ABB, AEG, Siemens, Schneider and Sécheron had engaged in a cartel in the context of public tenders organised by government-owned railway network company Infrabel and imposed fines amounting to a total of € 1,779,000. Infrabel had (...)

The Italian Competition Authority finds an anti-competitive agreement in the banking sector but does not impose any fine (ABI / SEDA)
Desogus Law Office (Cagliari)
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 EU Commission has a considerable margin of discretion to revise a proposed fine upwards concerning companies that have withdrawn from a settlement procedure (Timab Industries)
McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
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 confirms a fine of over 8 million euros for several hard-core vertical restrictions (Hyundai)
Dimitrov, Petrov & Co (Sofia)
Bulgaria: First-instance court confirms a fine of over € 8 mln on the distributor of Hyundai in Bulgaria for several hard-core vertical restrictions* At the very end of 2016, the Bulgarian Supreme Administrative Court in its first-instance 3-member panel, confirmed one of the highest fines ever (...)

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 (Brussels)
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)
Desogus Law Office (Cagliari)
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
Autorité de la concurrence (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 Commission orders to two professional associations to modify certain 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 Board 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 (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) Free
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)
Autorité de la concurrence (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 (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 (Chinese 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 (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 (...)

The US FTC charges an undertaking for an alleged invitation to collude with another undertaking that served as both a competitor and a supplier (Fortiline)
Morgan Lewis (New York)
This article has been nominated for the 2017 Antitrust Writing Awards. Click here to learn more about the Antitrust Writing Awards. A dual distribution relationship does not protect against Section 5 liability for an invitation to collude. For the first time, the Federal Trade Commission (...)

The Hungarian Competition Authority fines providers of medical products and medical devices for bid rigging (Chirmax)
Hungarian Competition Authority (Budapest)
The GVH imposed fines for coordination of bids in tenders of hospitals* In its decision the Gazdasági Versenyhivatal (Hungarian Competition Authority) established that, in order to influence the tender notice, share the market and fix prices, B. Braun Medical Magyarország Orvostechnológiai Kft., (...)

The Chinese NDRC sanctions three pharmaceutical companies for price fixing and joint boycotts (Huazhong Yaoye / Shandong Xinyi / Changzhou Siyao)
China Competition Bulletin (Beijing)
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University of Melbourne
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University of Melbourne
On 22 July 2016, the NDRC sanctioned 3 pharmaceutical companies for engaging in price fixing and joint boycotts in relation to estazolam tablets and active pharmaceutical ingredients (API), in breach of Articles 13(1)(1) and 13(1)(5) of the Anti-Monopoly Law (AML). The 3 companies (Huazhong (...)

The Hellenic Competition Commission introduces settlement procedure for cartels
Hellenic Competition Authority (Athens)
HCC introduces settlement procedure for cartels* By its unanimous Decision No. 628/2016, the Hellenic Competition Commission (HCC) established the terms and conditions of the settlement procedure in cartel cases, according to the provisions of Articles 25a and 14 par 2 of the Greek Competition (...)

The French Competition Authority fines suppliers and distributors of liquid fuel heating units for concluding horizontal and vertical anticompetitive agreements (PVG / Ligne Plus)
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
Liquid fuel backup heating units* The Autorité de la concurrence fines both PVG and Ligne Plus suppliers for anticompetitive agreement on wholesale prices and sharing of customer base (horizontal agreement). Besides, both suppliers are fined for having set distributors’ resale prices to the (...)

The French Competition Authority launches a public consultation on its midpoint assessment concerning its investigation on the hearing aids sector
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
Hearing aids* As part of its investigation on the hearing aids sector, the Autorité de la concurrence launches a public consultation on its mid-point assessment today. The Autorité encourages the sector’s players to express their opinion on the competition issues identified. Interested actors (...)

The Hellenic Competition Authority opens an ex-officio investigation into the luxury cosmetics market (L’Oréal)
Hellenic Competition Authority (Athens)
Ex-officio investigation into the luxury cosmetics market, for alleged infringements of competition rules.* Ex-officio investigation into the luxury cosmetics market, for alleged infringements of competition rules. The Grand Chamber of the HCC will convene on the 13th of October 2016 to (...)

The EU Commission accepts commitments by 14 shipping liner companies to change their practices concerning announcements of intended price increases for containerised shipping services (Liner Shipping case)
McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Paris)
EUROPEAN COMMISSION CHALLENGES PUBLIC PRICE ANNOUNCEMENTS BY SHIPPING LINER COMPANIES* On 7 July 2016, the European Commission adopted a decision accepting commitments by 14 shipping liner companies to change their practices concerning announcements of intended price increases for (...)

The EU Court of Justice rules that royalties for unpatented technology are not necessarily anticompetitive (Genentech)
McDermott Will & Emery (Paris)
EU COURT RULES THAT ROYALTIES FOR UNPATENTED TECHNOLOGY ARE NOT NECESSARILY ANTICOMPETITIVE* On 7 July 2016, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) handed down a judgment on whether Article 101 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) must be interpreted as (...)

The Indian Competition Appellate Tribunal reverses the Competition Authority’s decision and removes penalties for cartelization in packaging materials for sugar (Indian Jute Mills Association / Gunny Trade Association)
Vaish (New Delhi)
COMPAT sets aside CCI order penalizing Jute Mills Association for alleged cartelization for packaging material for sugar, etc.* COMPAT by its order dated July 1, 2016 has over-ruled the order of CCI wherein the Indian Jute Mils Association (IJMA) and Gunny Trade Association (GTA) were (...)

The Indian Competition Authority opens investigation into anticompetitive conduct by agricultural seed manufacturers (Kaveri Seed / Mahyco Monsanto Biotech / Maharashtra Hybrid Seeds)
Vaish (New Delhi)
CCI to investigate Monsanto Mahyco Monsanto Biotech (I) Limited & Ors.* The CCI, by way of its order dated June 9, 2016, directed the Director General (‘DG’) to investigate Mahyco Monsanto Biotech (I) Limited, Monsanto Holdings Private Ltd., Monsanto Inc., U.S.A. and Maharashtra Hybrid Seeds (...)

The Italian Regional Administrative Court of Latium sets aside a previous infringement decision made by the Italian Competition Authority on a bid-rigging practice (Rai servizi Post-Produzione)
Desogus Law Office (Cagliari)
By a judgment issued in Rai servizi post-produzione the Regional Administrative Court of Latium (the Court) reversed a previous infringement decision made by the Italian Competition Authority (ICA). The Court held that the ICA failed to establish an anti-competitive concerted practice to the (...)

The Hong Kong Competition Authority welcomes the action of an association ending a practice of retail price fixing of cigarettes (Newspaper Hawker Association)
Hong Kong Competition Commission
Competition Commission welcomes quick rectification by Hong Kong Newspaper Hawker Association on retail price of branded cigarettes* The Competition Commission (Commission) today (31 May) welcomes the quick action by the Hong Kong Newspaper Hawker Association (Association) to withdraw the (...)

The Croatian High Administrative Court fines several personal protection firms for cartel (Sokol Marić)
Croatian Competition Agency (Zagreb)
Decisions of the High Administrative Court* In the first case, by dismissing the claim of the claimants the High Administrative Court backed the CCA decision of 17 March 2015 establishing that the personal protection firms Sokol Marić, AKD-Zaštita, Securitas Hrvatska, Klemm Sigurnost, (...)

The UK Court of Appeal overturns a UK Patents Court decision and allows competition law arguments in a FRAND dispute in relation to Standard Essential Patents (Unwired Planet / Huawei / Samsung / Ericsson)
Monckton Chambers (London)
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Monckton Chambers (London)
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Monckton Chambers (London)
Court of Appeal reinstates Samsung’s case on non-discrimination and FRAND*On Friday 27 May, the Court of Appeal handed down an important judgment on the interplay between competition law and the licensing of essential patents.This is part of a landmark patent infringement case where Unwired (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority fines 8 manufacturers, their business associations and 4 executives for a long-term cartel in the adult diapers market (AIO)
European Commission (Brussels)
The CNMC fines eight manufacturers of adult nappies, their business association and four executives the sum of €128.8 for forming a cartel* The CNMC has found evidence of an infringement of Article 1 of the Defence of Competition Act, 15/2007, of 3 July, and Article 101 of the Treaty on the (...)

The EU Commission fines € 6.2 million a producer for participation in steel abrasives cartel(Pometon)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission fines Pometon € 6.2 million for participation in steel abrasives cartel* The European Commission has found that Italian abrasives producer Pometon S.p.A. breached EU antitrust rules by participating in a cartel to coordinate steel abrasives prices in Europe for almost four (...)

The Hellenic Competition Authority sends a statement of objection to suspected members of a cartel in the construction sector (Ellaktor)
Hellenic Competition Authority (Athens)
Statement of Objections addressed to undertakings active in the construction sector regarding an alleged infringement of Article 1 of the Greek Competition Act and Article 101 TFEU* Following the issuing of a statement of objections, the Hellenic Competition Commission (HCC) will convene on 21 (...)

The EU General Court dismisses an undertaking’s application seeking the reimbursement of interests paid for being late in paying a cartel fine due to its involvement in the industrial bags cartel (Trioplast)
McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
GENERAL COURT OF THE EU DISMISSES TRIOPLAST APPLICATION SEEKING REIMBURSEMENT OF INTEREST PAID FOR BEING LATE IN PAYING CARTEL FINE* With a judgment handed down on 12 May 2016 (Case T-669/14, Trioplast Industrier AB v. European Commission), the General Court of the European Union (GCEU) (...)

The Danish Competition Authority announces that three franchisees and one franchisor entered into a settlement for price fixing and market sharing (Lely Nordic)
Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (Copenhagen)
Denmark: ”Franchise chain in Denmark pays fine in settlement for fixed selling prices and shared markets of supply with respect to milking robots”* In April 2016, the franchisor Lely Nordic A/S, three Danish franchisees and a person from the management in Lely Nordic A/S entered into a (...)

The German Competition Authority fines food and drink retailers for hub-and-spoke cartel (AB InBev)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
In its decisions of 16 May 2015, 30 December 2015 and 28 April 2016, the German Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) found that food and drink retailers and the brewery Anheuser Busch InBev Germany Holding (“AB InBev”) engaged in a hub-and-spoke cartel by fixing prices for the sale of beer products. (...)

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

The ECJ Advocate General Nils Wahl suggests that the EU Court of Justice prevent retailers from selling tobacco products below the prices indicated on the tax stamps (Colruyt)
Tsvetkova Bebov Komarevski (Sofia)
Does the restriction upon the retail sale of tobacco products below the minimum prices set by manufacturers or importers on the tax stamp breach competition law?* On 21 April 2016, the Advocate General Nils Wahl issued his Opinion in Case C-221/15 – a proceeding initiated by a request for (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority fines manufacturers of prefabricated concrete garages for cartel (Rekers)
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (The Hague)
ACM fines cartel of manufacturers of concrete garages* The Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) has imposed a fine on a cartel of manufacturers of prefabricated concrete garages. The two largest manufacturers of such garages, Rekers Betonwerk and Juwel Betonbauteile, had (...)

The Indian Competition Appellate Tribunal sends the case back to the Competition Authority due to the failure to give defendants notice for appeal before imposing fines and violating the principle of natural justice (Jet Airways / InterGlobe Aviation / Spice Jet)
Vaish (New Delhi)
COMPAT sets-aside penalty imposed on domestic airlines and remands the matter back to the CCI* COMPAT by its order dated April 18, 2016 set-aside the penalty imposed on three domestic airlines by the CCI for alleged cartelization and remanded the matter back to the CCI for passing appropriate (...)

The Shaanxi Price Bureau fines a motor vehicle inspection industry association for price fixing (Xi’an / Shangluo / Yangling)
University of Melbourne
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China Competition Bulletin (Beijing)
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Hogan Lovells (Beijing)
The Shaanxi Price Bureau fined the Shaanxi Motor Vehicle Inspection Industry Association and 31 motor vehicle inspection businesses in Xi’an, Shangluo, and Yangling for price fixing. Motor vehicle inspection fees were originally government guided in Shaanxi, and they became liberalised on 15 (...)

The German Higher Regional Court of Celle finds that limited resale price maintenance does not amount to an appreciable restriction of competition (A-Vitalkost)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 7 April 2016, the Higher Regional Court of Celle held that resale price maintenance in the framework of a promotion offered to pharmacies for the sale of a dietary product did not constitute an appreciable restriction of competition and therefore did not infringe competition law. In 2014, (...)

The German Higher Regional Court of Celle court finds that a minimum resale price campaign does not result in an appreciable restriction of competition given the campaign’s limited timeframe and scope (Almased Wellness)
Commeo (Frankfurt)
In its judgement of 7 April 2016, the Celle Higher Regional Court (“the Court”) found that resale price maintenance (“RPM”) does not per se result in an appreciable restriction of competition. The Court held that the setting of a minimum resale price in the framework of a promotion offered to (...)

The EU Commission fines an undertaking in the market of canned mushrooms for its participation in a cartel (Riberebro)
DG COMP (Brussels)
Antitrust: Commission fines Riberebro €5.2 million for participation in canned mushrooms cartel* The European Commission has found that Spanish canned and fresh vegetable company Riberebro participated in a cartel to coordinate prices and allocate customers of canned mushrooms in Europe for (...)

The US District Court for the Southern District of New York confirms that cooperative processes such as setting benchmark interest rates may be subject to antitrust laws (Alaska Electrical Pension / Bank of America)
Constantine Cannon (New York)
Competitors engaged in cooperative processes find they face competing approaches by Southern District of New York Judges weighing antitrust liability*The scope of antitrust liability for competitors engaged in cooperative processes—such as setting benchmark interest rates—became murkier this week (...)

The Dutch Competition Authority fines cold-storage firms for cartel (Kloosbeheer)
Netherlands Authority for Consumers & Markets (The Hague)
ACM imposed fines of EUR 12.5 million on cold-storage firms* The Netherlands Authority for Consumers and Markets (ACM) has imposed fines, totaling almost EUR 12.5 million, in three cases on four companies in the cold storage industry (freezing and refrigerated storage). Five executives were (...)

The Finnish Market Court fines a professional association for implementing unlawful price recommendations (Finnish Bakery Federation)
Finnish Competition and Consumer Authority (Helsinki)
Market Court imposes fines on the Finnish Bakery Federation for forbidden price recommendations* The Market Court has imposed a EUR 15,000 penalty to the Finnish Bakery Federation’s unlawful price recommendations in 2007–2011. The Market Court’s decision is in line with the penalty proposal made (...)

The Bulgarian Competition Authority publishes the result of an inquiry and opens proceedings regarding possible price-fixing cartels and abuse of dominance in the fuel sector (Lukoil)
Mondelez (Sofia)
On February 25, 2016 the Commission for Protection of Competition (CPC) in Bulgaria has published its Conclusion of the sector inquiry on the Bulgarian market for the manufacture and sale of petrol and diesel fuels. The sector inquiry was initiated the middle of 2015 as doubts occurred that (...)

The Italian Competition Authority fines two trade associations and several local cooperative banks for fixing mortgage interest rates (Mortgage interest rates agreement)
Desogus Law Office (Cagliari)
The Italian Competition Authority (ICA) has recently closed an antitrust investigation in the ‘Mortgage interest rates agreement’ case by finding guilty two cooperative trade associations and 14 small cooperative banks for carrying out two price-fixing agreements in the province of Bolzano (the (...)

The Belgian Competition Authority adopts its second settlement decision in an industrial battery cartel case (Battery manufacturers)
Van Bael & Bellis (Brussels)
On 23 February 2016, the College of Competition Prosecutors (the “Competition College”) of the Belgian Competition Authority adopted its second settlement decision involving six battery manufacturers (Battery Supplies, Celecric, Emrol, Enersys, Exide Technologies and Hoppecke) on account of these (...)

The Belgian Competition Authority fines 6 undertakings for price-fixing agreement in the sector of industrial batteries (Emrol)
Belgian Competition Authority (Brussels)
The Belgian Competition Authority imposes fines amounting to 3.857.000 EUR for price-fixing in the sector of industrial batteries* The Investigation and Prosecution Service of the Belgian Competition Authority sanctions 6 companies for price-fixing by applying an agreed lead surcharge to the (...)

The Cypriot Competition Authority imposes €31m fine on nine commercial banks for anticompetitive practices (JCC)
Trojan Economics (Nicosia)
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On 27/01/2016 the Cyprus Commission for the Protection of Competition (“CPC”) ended its investigation against eight commercial banks (Bank of Cyprus Public Company Ltd (“BOC”), Marfin Popular Bank Public Co Ltd (“Marfin”), Hellenic Bank Ltd (“Hellenic Bank”), Alpha Bank Cyprus Ltd (“Alpha Bank”), (...)

The Cypriot Competition Authority fines several banking for abuse of dominance and cartel (JCC )
Commission for the Protection of Competition of the Republic of Cyprus (Nicosia)
The Commission for the Protection of Competition with its decision no. 6/2016 dated 27/01/2016 imposed on JCC Payment Systems Limited, Bank of Cyprus Public Company Ltd, Marfin Popular Bank Public Co Ltd, Hellenic Bank Public, USB Bank Plc, Alpha Bank Cyprus Ltd, Emporiki Bank of Cyprus Ltd, (...)

The Croatian Competition Authority fines several sports betting companies for cartel (Bolus / Favorit sportska kladionica)
Croatian Competition Agency (Zagreb)
CCA establishes a cartel between betting shops* The undertakings engaged in sports betting Bolus, Favorit sportska kladionica, Germania Sport, Prva sportska kladionica and Super Sport agreed on the future bookmaker commission fee in the Republic of Croatia. The CCA fined the bookmakers 9.7 (...)

The EU Court of Justice gives a preliminary ruling for an alleged collusion among a number of travel agencies through an online travel booking system (Eturas)
Max Planck Institute for Innovation and Competition (Munich)
On 21 January 2016 the European Court of Justice (ECJ) gave a preliminary ruling upon the request of the Supreme Administrative Court of Lithuania in the Eturas case. At the core of the case was an alleged collusion among a number of travel agencies through an online travel booking system (...)

The Romanian Competition Authority fines three fuels wholesale companies for implementing anticompetitive agreements (Tinmar / Planoil)
Romanian Competition Council (Bucharest)
The Competition Council has sanctioned three fuels wholesale companies* The Competition Council has sanctioned with fines amounting 16.907.202 lei (approx.3,7 million Euro) three fuels wholesale companies for concluding anticompetitive agreements. The sanctioned companies are the following: (...)

The US Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit hears interesting oral argument on Foreign Trade Antitrust Improvements Act related issues (Best Buy / Hannstar Display)
GeyerGorey (Washington)
Ninth Circuit’s Oral Argument on FTAIA Related Appeal* If an FTAIA related case is ever taken by the Supreme Court I believe it will be a private civil price fixing damage case like Best Buy Co., Inc. v. Hannstar Display Corporation. The Antitrust Division’s international cartel prosecutions (...)

The Chinese NDRC fines shipping companies for price-fixing (EUKOR / Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics / Eastern Car Liner / Mitsui)
GeyerGorey (Washington)
China Fines 7 Shipping Companies $65 Million* Shipping cartels have been a frequent target of prosecution by the Antitrust Division of the United States Department of Justice. The rules around shipping cartels can be confusing because certain joint pricing activity can be legal and there are (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Authority announces that three cinema operators have implemented two separate cartel agreements (Forum Cinemas)
Lithuanian Competition Authority (Vilnius)
Lithuanian Competition Council detected two cartels by cinema operators* On December 18 Lithuanian Competition Council (KT) announced that three cinema operators, “Forum Cinemas“, “Multikino Lietuva“ and “Cinamon Operations“, had been fixing prices of cinema tickets as part of two separate cartel (...)

The Polish Competition Authority fines several companies for a price fixing agreement on the market of brand watches (Swatch)
Polish Competition Authority (Warsaw)
Poland’s competition Authority concludes proceeding on wristwatch market collusion* The Office of Competition and Consumer Protection (UOKiK) fines Swatch Group Polska and several retailers for entering into an illegal price setting agreement on a range of watch brands. Proceedings in the case (...)

The Hungarian Competition Authority reduces the fine imposed in the pipe cartel case (Pipelife)
Hungarian Competition Authority (Budapest)
Fine reduction via leniency policy* The Gazdasági Versenyhivatal (GVH – Hungarian Competition Authority) established that BTH Fitting Gyártó és Forgalmazó Kft. (BTH), Pipelife Hungária Műanyagipari Kft. (Pipelife), Wavin Hungary Ipari, Kereskedelmi and Szolgáltató Kft. (Wavin) concluded market sharing (...)

The Pakistani Competition Authority publishes a show cause notice to a professional association suspected prima facie of fixing prices of poultry products (PPA)
Competition Commission of Pakistan (Islamabad)
CCP issues showcause notice to pakistan poultry association over prima facie fixing prices of poultry products* The Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP) has issued a show cause notice to the Pakistan Poultry Association (PPA) for prima facie violation of Section 4 of the Competition Act, (...)

The Indian Competition Commission fines airlines for a cartel regarding fuel surcharge (Jet Airways / InterGlobe Aviation / Spice Jet)
Lakshmikumaran & Sridharan (New Delhi)
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Lakshmikumaran & Sridharan (New Delhi)
Introduction Continuing with its mandate of preventing any practice which has an appreciable adverse effect on competition (AAEC) in India including crackdowns on cartel, the Competition Commission of India (CCI) has, recently, found a case of cartelization in the airline industry segment in (...)

The Zambian Competition Authority conducts dawn raids as part of an investigation into the alleged fixing of maize and flour prices (Millers Association)
Primerio (Washington)
Zambia: Competition Authority conducts dawn raids in the maize milling industry* ZNBC reported on 30 October 2015 that the Zambian Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (CCPC) conducted dawn raids on three milling companies, namely National Milling Corporation, Superior Milling (...)

The Chinese NDRC and the Chongqing AIC take separate actions to punish cartel conduct and refusal to supply in the pharmaceutical industry (Allopurinol)
University of Melbourne
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China Competition Bulletin (Beijing)
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Hogan Lovells (Beijing)
Both the NDRC and the Chongqing Administration for Industry and Commerce (Chongqing AIC) have recently taken enforcement action to address anticompetitive conduct involving allopurinol. Allopurinol tablets are a common treatment for gout (known as hyperuricemia), widely used in clinical (...)

The English Court of Appeal strikes out two cartel damage claims based on the torts of conspiracy and economic interference and narrows the scope of other potential claims (Air Cargo)
Simmons & Simmons (London)
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Simmons & Simmons (London)
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Simmons & Simmons (London)
In brief There were three significant developments in the air cargo cartel damages litigation in the UK in October 2015. First, on 14 October 2015, the English Court of Appeal significantly narrowed the scope of potential claims in the UK by striking out two claims based on the torts of (...)

The Danish Competition Appeals Tribunal upholds the Competition Authority’s decision which found a franchisor company guilty of price fixing and market sharing in the market for robotic milking systems (Lely Scandinavia / Danish Lely Centres)
European Commission (Brussels)
The Danish Competition Appeal Tribunal: Agreement to Fix Prices and Share Markets in Robotic Milking Systems Sector was Illegal* On 30 September 2015, the Danish Competition Appeals Tribunal has upheld a decision adopted by the Danish Competition Council (DCC) on 25 June 2014. The DCC’s (...)

The Italian Council of State says that major ferry companies did not agree to increase fares for the Sardinia-Continental Italy maritime links (Sardinia Ferries Fares)
Desogus Law Office (Cagliari)
By a recent judgment made on 11 June 2013 in the Sardinia Ferries Fares case1, the Italian Council of State (CS) has rejected the appeal filed by the Italian Competition Authority (ICA) against the judgment of administrative court of first instance (Tar Lazio)2, which overturned the (...)

The Russian Competition Authority concludes that regional agreements must not contain competition restrictions
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
FAS warns* Regional agreements must not contain anticompetitive agreements The Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS Russia) has sent letters to the Heads of regional executive bodies reminding that it is unacceptable to include provisions in the agreements that lead or can lead to restricted (...)

The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit clarifies analysis of alleged hub-and-spoke conspiracies under the Sherman Act (J. Ramsey / NAMM)
Siemens (New York)
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Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler (New York)
Ninth Circuit Clarifies Analysis of Alleged Hub-and-Spoke Conspiracies Under the Sherman Act* Yesterday, the Ninth Circuit issued an opinion affirming the dismissal of plaintiffs’ consolidated complaint in In re Musical Instruments and Equipment Antitrust Litigation. In addressing plaintiffs’ (...)

The UK Competition Authority fines an association of undertakings for anti-competitive information exchange and pricing agreements (Consultant Eye Surgeon Partnership)
Stephenson Harwood (London)
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British Competition Authority - CMA (London)
I. Background On 26 May 2013, the UK Competition Authority (the OFT at the time), received a complaint alleging concerns that Consultant Eye Surgeon Limited Liability Partnerships (“LLPs”), via their membership association CESP Limited (“CESP Ltd”), were agreeing prices and sharing prices and (...)

The US FTC subjects to public comment the consent agreement proposed by two pharmaceutical companies that implemented an unlawful agreement not to compete (Concordia and Par)
US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) (Washington)
Pharmaceutical companies settle ftc charges of an illegal agreement not to compete, which resulted in higher prices for generic version of ADHD drug* Pharmaceutical companies Concordia Pharmaceuticals Inc. and Par Pharmaceutical, Inc. have settled FTC charges that they entered into an unlawful (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority issues a statement reminding economic agents of its strict policy on price fixing in the context of the Mexican peso’s recent depreciation
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE shall be vigilant of coordination to fix prices* In the context of the Mexican peso’s recent depreciation, the Federal Economic Competition Commission (COFECE or Commission) would like to make the following statements: The Mexican Constitution and applicable legislation that establish a (...)

The Moscow Arbitration Appeal Court confirms the bid-rigging decision pronounced by the Russian Competition Authority in the construction market (Vozrozhdenie)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
Appeal Court pronounced legitimacy of the decision and fine on a bid-rigging case against the Commandant’s Office of the internal troops of the Ministry of Interior* On 17 August 2015, the 9th Arbitration Appeal Court dismissed the claim of “Vozrozhdenie” Construction Company” Ltd. and pronounced (...)

The UK Patents Courts considers Articles 101 and 102 TFEU in FRAND dispute relating to standard essential patents (Unwired Planet / Huawei / Samsung / Google / Ericsson)
University College London
Give us a FRAND: Unwired Planet v Huawei & Samsung*On 29 January, Mr Justice Birss gave judgment in the second UK patent trial between Unwired Planet, Samsung and Huawei, holding that two of Unwired Planet’s patents are invalid for obviousness. The case concerns patents that were declared (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority imposes fines on several transportation companies for price-fixing agreements (OTEZ)
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE sanctions passenger transportation companies in the state of Chiapas for absolute monopolistic practices* The Federal Economic Competition Commission’s (COFECE) Board of Commissionerssanctioned 7 passenger transportation companiesin the state of Chiapas with a total fine of $2.78 (...)

The German Competition Authority fines weapon suppliers for price-fixing agreements (Bühl, Paar Logistik, Aichachr)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt imposes fines on armaments suppliers on account of price-fixing agreements* The Bundeskartellamt has imposed fines totalling 1.3 million euros on three suppliers of the Bundeswehr (German Federal Armed Forces), which sell so-called rubber track pads and vibration dampers for (...)

The EU Court of Justice confirms that the Commission can take into account sales of products incorporating cartelised components when calculating the fine for vertically-integrated companies that sell the transformed products in the EEA (InnoLux)
Covington & Burling (Brussels)
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Sidley Austin (Brussels)
I. Parties InnoLux Corp. (“InnoLux”), the applicant, is the surviving legal entity pursuant to a merger agreement between Chi Mei Optoelectronics Corp. (“CMO”), InnoLux Display Corp. and TPO Displays Corp in 2010. InnoLux is active in the worldwide market for liquid crystal display panels (“LCD (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority opens an ex-officio investigation concerning possible absolute monopolistic practices in the market for the provision of administrative services for workers’ pension funds (AFORES)
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE to Investigate Possible Absolute Monopolistic Practices in the Market for Pension Fund Administration Services in Mexico* Through the Mexican Federal Official Gazette and its website, the Federal Economic Competition Commission’s (COFECE or Commission) Investigative Authority announced (...)

The Moscow Arbitration Court confirms the decision of the Russian Competition Authority which prohibited vertical agreements in the market of equipment for industrial laundry (VMW)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
Cassation Court supported FAS decision on a case on prohibited “vertical” agreements* On 1 July 2015, the Arbitration Court of the Moscow District dismissed a cassation appeal of “Food Technologies” Trading House” Ltd., “BT Machinery” Ltd. and “Obschepitoborudtorg” Ltd. Thus, the Court pronounced (...)

The US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit reaffirms the principle that even vertical agreements that seem lawful in the abstract can be evidence in horizontal cartel (Apple)
Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler (New York)
Second Circuit Affirms Ruling Against Apple in E-book Price-Fixing Case* We have previously posted about United States v. Apple, Inc., a blockbuster trial that ended with Judge Denise Cote of the Southern District of New York concluding that Apple had conspired with five publishing companies (...)

The US Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit affirms ruling condemning masterminding the creation, organization and implementation of a conspiracy by five ebook publishers (Apple)
Sheppard Mullin (San Francisco)
The Second Circuit’s Apple Ebooks Opinion* The Second Circuit affirmed the district court and held, 2 to 1, that defendant Apple Inc. had violated Section 1 by masterminding the creation, organization and implementation of a conspiracy by five publishers of ebooks that benefited Apple, as Apple (...)

The Spanish Competition Authority fines 12 companies in the refrigerated road haulage market and their sectoral association for price fixing (Grupo Disfrimur, Grupo Trans Onuba)
European Commission (Brussels)
The CNMC issues 8.8 million euros in fines to 12 refrigerated road haulage companies and their sectoral association* The CNMC issues 8.8 million euros in fines to 12 refrigerated road haulage companies and their sectoral association. The sanctions were imposed following an infraction of (...)

The German Competition Authority sanctions five companies for their participation to a cartel in the manufacturing of acoustically effective components for the automotive industry (Autoneum Germany)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt imposes fines of 75 million euros on automotive part manufacturers* On account of price fixing agreements the Bundeskartellamt has imposed fines totalling 75 million euros on five manufacturers of acoustically effective components and staff responsible which supply the (...)

The Danish Competition Council holds that a consortium which won a public tender was anti-competitive by object (LKF / Eurostar)
Gorrissen Federspiel (Copenhagen)
A consortium turned out to be a cartel* In a landmark decision taken on 24 June 2015, the Danish Competition Council (DCC) held that a consortium which won a public tender was anti-competitive by object. In following the Danish Competition and Consumer Authority’s (DCCA) recommendation, the DCC (...)

The Belgian Competition Authority adopts its first settlement decision and fines retailers and producers of home and personal care products (Cartel de la beauté)
Stephenson Harwood (London)
I. Background On 18 September 2006 the Belgian Competition Authority (BCA) opened an investigation into the Home and Personal Care (HPC) market in Belgium following Colgate’s leniency application. Few months later the BCA carried out dawn raids at the premises of the main large retailers in (...)

The German Competition Authority imposes fine on manufacturers of prefabricated garages for price-fixing agreements (Rekers)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Fines imposed on manufacturers of prefabricated garages on account of price-fixing agreements* The Bundeskartellamt has imposed fines amounting to 11 million euros on ten manufacturers of prefabricated garages for their involvement in price-fixing agreements. Andreas Mundt, President of the (...)

The German Competition Authority assesses vertical and horizontal price fixing in cartel proceedings focusing on the food sector (Aldi / Edeka / Kaufland / Metro / REWE / Haribo / Ritter)
Commeo (Frankfurt)
In June 2015, the German Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) has concluded most of its long going proceedings against manufacturers and retailers in the food sector for illegally fixing the retail prices of branded products. The FCO imposed total fines of EUR 151.6million on both manufacturers and (...)

The US Supreme Court declines to resolve a closely watched circuit split on the applicability of the Foreign Trade Antitrust Improvements Act (Motorola / AU Optronics)
Siemens (New York)
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Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler (New York)
Supreme Court Surprises the Antitrust World with Denial of Cert in Motorola and AU Optronics* Today the United States Supreme Court denied certiorari in two cases, Motorola Mobility LLC v. AU Optronics et al. and Hsiung and AU Optronics Corp. America Inc. v. United States, declining to resolve (...)

The US Supreme Court declines an appeal for two related antitrust cases involving an international price-fixing cartel (Motorola / AU Optronics)
Womble Bond Dickinson (Washington)
Motorola and the Extraterritorial Application of US Antitrust Laws to Foreign Component Price Fixing Cartels* Last month the Supreme Court declined to accept an appeal for two related antitrust cases involving an international price-fixing cartel. The cases come from different circuits, one (...)

The Indian Competition Authority exonerates an air transport association from accusations of anticompetitive agreements and price fixing (Air Cargo Agents Association of India / IATA International Air Transport Association)
Vaish (New Delhi)
CCI exonerates IATA for alleged anti-competitive agreement(s) and price-fixing* CCI by its order dated June 04, 2015 had exonerated IATA for alleged anticompetitive practices and abuse of dominance. The instant case was filed by Air Cargo Agents Association of India (ACAAI) against (...)

The Yunnan Development and Reform Commission investigates abuse of administrative power and cartel conduct (Yunnan Provincial Communications Authority)
University of Melbourne
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China Competition Bulletin (Beijing)
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Hogan Lovells (Beijing)
Yunnan DRC investigates abuse of administrative power and cartel in the telecommunications industry in Yunnan* On 2 June 2015, the NDRC announced that its local office in Yunnan Province, the Yunnan Development and Reform Commission (Yunnan DRC), found that the Yunnan Province Communications (...)

The Hunan Administration for Industry and Commerce fines an undertaking for cartel and for monopolising the market (Mayang Miao Autonomous County shale brick operators)
University of Melbourne
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China Competition Bulletin (Beijing)
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Hogan Lovells (Beijing)
Hunan AIC investigates shale brick cartel in Mayang* On 1 June 2015, the SAIC published the decisions made by the Hunan Administration for Industry and Commerce (Hunan AIC) in December 2014 and January 2015 relating to its investigation into a shale brick cartel in the Mayang Miao Autonomous (...)

The Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court imposes a fine on two manufacturers of clay roof tiles for cartel (Cartel of Manufacturers of Clay roof tiles)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Fines for clay roof tile cartel: 66 million euros declared final – 70 million euros invalid due to loophole in legal succession provisions* With its decision of 29 May 2015 the Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court imposed fines amounting to around 42 million euros on two manufacturers of clay roof (...)

The Indian Competition Authority exonerates leading car manufacturer from accusations of anticompetitive agreement and abuse of dominance (Rooster Info / Maruti Suzuki)
Vaish (New Delhi)
CCI exonerates Maruti Suzuki India Ltd. against allegations of anti-competitive agreement and abuse of dominant Position* CCI by its order dated May 28, 2015 exonerated Maruti Suzuki India Ltd (Maruti) for alleged contravention of sections 3 and 4 of the Act. The instant case was filed by (...)

The Italian Competition Authority finds collusive tendering practices in the market for rail equipment (Forniture Trenitalia)
Desogus Law Office (Cagliari)
In the Forniture Trenitalia case the Italian Competition Authority (ICA) has closed an Article 101 TFEU investigation into a collusive tendering practice with an infringement decision . It found 13 firms guilty of bid-rigging and imposed on them a total fine of € 1,987,307.16 for regulating (...)

The US District Court for the Northern District of California allows a class action alleging price-fixing in the capacitors sector to go forward (Capacitors Antitrust Class action)
Siemens (New York)
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Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler (New York)
In re Capacitors Antitrust Class Action Litigation Survives Motion to Dismiss* Direct and indirect capacitor purchasers who filed class action complaints against an alleged worldwide cartel of capacitor manufacturers have, for the most part, survived a motion to dismiss in the Northern (...)

The Italian Competition Authority finds a collusive tendering practice in the market for post-production TV programmes (Servizi di post-produzione di programmi televisivi-Rai)
Desogus Law Office (Cagliari)
In Servizi di post-produzione di programmi televisivi-Rai (Rai TV post production services) the Italian Competition Authority (ICA) has found that several operators infringed Article 2 of the Italian Competition Act no. 287/90, corresponding to Article 101 TFEU, as they were guilty of (...)

The EU Competition Authorities adopt decisions on Most Favoured Nation clauses and rebate schemes that are relevant and applicable in the context of ASEAN competition law (Booking.com / Post Danmark)
Rajah & Tann (Singapore)
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Rajah & Tann (Singapore)
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McCarter & English (Washington)
This article has been nominated for the 2016 Antitrust Writing Awards. Click here to learn more about the Antitrust Writing Awards. Introduction As we move into the second half of the year, we examine two recent competition enforcement cases in Europe, and consider their relevance and (...)

The US DoJ receives five parent-level guilty pleas for conspiring to manipulate foreign-currency markets from financial institutions (Citicorp / JPMorgan Chase / Barclays / RBS / UBS)
Porter Wright Morris & Arthur (Columbus)
World’s top banks plead guilty to gaming foreign-currency markets* Scandal roiled the banking industry Wednesday as four of the world’s largest banks — Citigroup, JPMorgan Chase, Barclays and Royal Bank of Scotland — pleaded guilty to federal antitrust violations for conspiring to manipulate (...)

The US DoJ awards a company sentencing credit for implementing an effective compliance program after the launch of an investigation in the alleged forex cartel conspiracy (Barclays)
Paul Hastings (Washington)
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Paul Hastings (Washington)
As spring gives way to summer, the first “green shoots” signaling the willingness of the Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice to credit compliance programs have emerged. For the first time ever, the Division has awarded a company sentencing credit for implementing an effective (...)

The UK Competition Authority decides to close its investigations following approval of European interchange fees regulation (MasterCard / Visa)
Bird & Bird (London)
UK Competition and Market Authority Shuts Down MasterCard and Visa Probes Following Approval of European Interchange Fees Regulation* The UK Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA”) announced on Wednesday that it is closing its investigations into MasterCard’s and Visa’s multilateral interchange (...)

The Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court upholds that remuneration system applied in the "Irsching contracts" between two electricity providers violates competition law (E.ON / TenneT)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court confirms that the remuneration system applied in the "Irsching contracts" is in violation of competition law* In its decision of 28. April 2015 (see Press Release of the Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court of 28 April 2015) the Düsseldorf Higher Regional Court (...)

The Indian Competition Authority starts investigating a taxi company for abuse of dominance through predatory pricing (Fast Track Call Cab / ANI Technologies - OLA Cabs)
Vaish (New Delhi)
Competition Commission launches investigation into OLA Cabs* By an order dated April 24 2015 the Competition Commission launched an investigation into M/s ANI Technologies Pvt Ltd (OLA Cabs) for alleged abuse of its dominant position by indulging in predatory pricing in the relevant market (...)

The Bulgarian Competition Authority finds that amendments to attorney act are anti-competitive
European Commission (Brussels)
Amendments to Attorney Act Found to Be Anti-competitive* On 22 April 2015, the CPC adopted an opinion regarding the Draft Law for Amendment of the Attorney Act (Decision 353), finding that: the proposed centralisation of the examination procedure for attorney candidates before the Supreme Bar (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority opens an investigation in the air transport sector
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE initiates investigation into air transport sector* Through the Mexican Federal Official Gazette and its website, the Federal Economic Competition Commission’s (COFECE) Investigative Authority publicly announced the extract of its ex-officio investigation initiation decision under file (...)

The German Competition Authority publishes a draft decision concerning the round timber proceedings against a Federal State (Baden-Württemberg)
German Competition Authority (Bonn)
Bundeskartellamt issues a draft decision in the round timber proceedings against the Federal State of Baden-Württemberg* In the proceedings concerning the marketing of round timber by the Federal State of Baden-Württemberg, the Bundeskartellamt has today sent a draft decision to the state and (...)

The Pakistan Competition Authority imposes fines on an association of automobile manufacturers for cartel (PAMADA)
Competition Commission of Pakistan (Islamabad)
CCP imposes pkr 140 million penalty on automobile dealers’ association for cartelization* The Competition Commission of Pakistan (CCP) has passed an order imposing a penalty of PKR 140 Million on the Pakistan Automobile Manufacturers Authorized Dealers Association (PAMADA) for cartelization in (...)

The US Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit rejects a claim of collusion in the text messaging sector and reminds the limits of "hot" documents (Text messaging)
BakerHostetler (Washington)
Collusion Course: The Limits of Hot Documents* Discovery in antitrust cases often involves a search for smoking-gun documents. Those documents can consist of emails proving that competitors conspired to raise prices, removing the difficulties faced by prosecutors or civil plaintiffs in proving (...)

The US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit affirms the district court’s grant of summary judgment in a price-fixing litigation (Text Messaging)
McDermott Will & Emery (Paris)
On Thursday, April 9, 2015, the Seventh Circuit affirmed the district court’s grant of summary judgment for AT&T Mobility LLC, Verizon Wireless LLC, T-Mobile USA Inc. and Sprint Corp., in a text messaging price-fixing litigation. In re Text Messaging Antitrust Litigation, case number (...)

The Croatian Competition Authority issues two cartel decisions concerning the personal protection market and the market of provision of berth and mooring services (Sokol Marić / AKD-Zaštita / Securitas Hrvatska)
Croatian Competition Agency (Zagreb)
Two cartel decisions by the CCA* The Croatian Competition Agency adopted two decisions on prohibited horizontal agreements, first, in the provision of personal protection services involving seven undertakings and second, in the provision of berth and mooring services, where nine undertakings (...)

The US Circuit Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit annuls a district court’s order which certified a class of direct purchasers in a price-fixing suit in the blood reagents market (Ortho Clinical Diagnostics)
McDermott Will & Emery (Paris)
On Wednesday, April 8, 2015, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals vacated a district court’s order certifying a class of direct purchasers of blood reagents in a price-fixing suit against Ortho-Clinical Diagnostics Inc. In re Blood Reagents, case number 12-4067. Plaintiffs allege that (...)

The US DoJ announces first criminal prosecution against a conspiracy specifically targeting e-commerce (Topkins)
Siemens (New York)
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Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler (New York)
First E-commerce Price Fixing Prosecution Yields Swift Guilty Plea* In what it is calling the Antitrust Division’s “first criminal prosecution against a conspiracy specifically targeting e-commerce,” the Department of Justice has announced that an individual has agreed to plead guilty to charges (...)

The US DoJ files the first e-commerce case regarding price fixing (Topkins) Free
GeyerGorey (Washington)
Antitrust Division Files First E-Commerce Case* David Topkins, a former executive at the E-Commerce Merchants Trade Association, an e-commerce seller of posters, prints and framed art, has agreed to plead guilty for conspiring to fix the prices of posters sold online. The one-count felony (...)

The French Competition Authority publishes a new notice concerning its leniency programme
French Competition Authority (Paris)
Revision of the leniency procedural notice* The Autorité de la concurrence has published a new notice concerning its Leniency Programme The Autorité de la concurrence, meeting in plenary session, has adopted the revised procedural notice relating to its Leniency Programme. This revision of the (...)

The Hellenic Competition Authority sends a statement of objections to undertakings for suspected cartel in the steel long products sector (Sidenor / Hellenic Halyvourgia / Halyvourgiki)
Hellenic Competition Authority (Athens)
Statement of Objections addressed to companies active in the production and trading of steel products regarding alleged infringements of competition rules * Following the issuing of a Statement of Objections, the Hellenic Competition Commission (HCC) will convene on 29.05.2015 to hear a case (...)

The French Competition Authority imposes fines on three millers for cartel in the market of flour sold to craft bakeries (Axiane Meunerie / Minoteries Cantin / Grands Moulins de Strasbourg)
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence fines 3 millers for anticompetitive agreements on increases in the price of flour sold to craft bakeries.* The Autorité de la concurrence issues today a decision whereby it fines Axiane meunerie, Minoteries Cantin and Grands Moulins de Strasbourg a total of 1.1 (...)

The Mexican Competition Authority opens an investigation concerning the national market for the production, distribution, and merchandising of eggs
Mexican Competition Authority (Mexico City)
COFECE opens investigation into the egg market* Mexico City, March 26th 2015. – Through its website, the Federal Economic Competition Commission’s (COFECE) Investigation Authority publicly announced the extract of its ex-officio initiation decision under file number IO-004-2015 concerning the (...)

A US District Judge finds that plaintiffs’ allegations can be sufficient to support their antitrust claim even if they failed to adequately define a cognizable market (Aluminum Warehousing)
Siemens (New York)
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Patterson Belknap Webb & Tyler (New York)
In re: Aluminum Warehousing: Cats Live for Another Day* On March 26, 2015, U.S. District Judge Katherine Forrest of the Southern District of New York, in a very colorful decision that metaphorically describes the plaintiffs as cats trying to locate a “rat” in the world of aluminum warehousing, (...)

The Norwegian Court of Appeals upholds that a joint bid submitted under a public tender constituted an anti-competitive agreement by object (Ski Taxi / Follo Taxisentral / Ski Follo Taxidrift)
Haavind (Oslo)
Joint bid labelled ‘by object’ infringement* Appeals court upheld decision against local taxi cooperatives’ bidding consortium In a judgment of 17 March 2015, Borgarting appeals court in Oslo upheld the Norwegian Competition Authority’s decision against two local taxi cooperatives and a jointly (...)

The US Supreme Court clarifies the application of the Foreign Trade Antitrust Improvement Act (Motorola / AU Optronics)
Wolters Kluwer (Riverwoods)
Supreme Court Has Opportunity to Clarify Application of Foreign Trade Antitrust Improvements Act* Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court was asked, in parallel petitions, to resolve a split between the Seventh Circuit and the Ninth Circuit on the application of the federal antitrust laws to a (...)

The French Competition Authority imposes fines on several producers of fresh dairy for cartel (Yoghurt cartel)
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
Cartel in the fresh dairy products sector (yoghurts, fromages blancs, milk-based desserts, etc.)* The Autorité de la concurrence fines €192.7 million an anticompetitive agreement on dairy products sold under retail private labels The Autorité issues today a decision in which it finds the (...)

A US District Court rules that it could assume the umbrella theory of antitrust injury is viable for the purposes of determining whether the plaintiffs are entitled to a preliminary injunction (Boardman / Pacific Seafood)
BakerHostetler (Washington)
Oregon Federal Court Weighs In on Disputed Umbrella Theory of Damages* An Oregon federal court recently relied on the so-called umbrella theory of damages to decide that the plaintiffs had an antitrust injury necessary to pursue an injunction. While this decision has garnered attention for (...)

The US Supreme Court decides on whether nominally public body must show “active supervision” by the state government to enjoy antitrust immunity (North Carolina State Board of Dental Examiners)
Cleveland University - Marshall School of Law
North Carolina Dentists is in the Hizzouse, Y’all! Woot Woot!* So, the only real surprise about yesterday’s opinion in North Carolina State Bd of Dental Examiners v. FTC is that it wasn’t unanimous. The strongly worded six-member majority opinion, already receiving early applause (see here and (...)

The UK Competition Authority issues an updated statement relating to its investigation into the Great Britain energy markets
British Competition Authority - CMA (London)
The CMA has today published an updated issues statement as part of its investigation into the Great Britain energy markets.* The updated issues statement (PDF, 969KB, 49 pages) summarises the investigation group’s initial thinking based on the evidence it has received, and the analysis it has (...)

The Antimonopoly Office of the Slovak Republic opens ex officio proceedings relative to possible agreements restricting competition concluded between five undertakings acting in the market of meal vouchers and other benefit vouchers
Slovak Competition Authority (Bratislava)
The Antimonopoly Office of the Slovak Republic suspects the companies providing meal and benefit vouchers of cartel* On February 16, 2015 the Antimonopoly Office of the Slovak Republic, Division of Cartels, ex officio initiated the administrative proceedings in the matter of possible (...)

The Indian Competition Commission fines a trade association for calling for price hike (All India Motor Transport Congress)
Amit Sibal (New Delhi)
CCI fines All India Motor Transport Congress for calling for price hike* The Competition Commission of India (CCI) imposed the maximum penalty of 10% of the average turnover on the All India Motor Transport Congress (AIMTC) the apex trade association for road transport service providers (both (...)

The Arbitration Court of Moscow confirms the sanctions imposed on an association having restricted competition but reduced the fine pronounced (Association of Operators of Orenburg Regional Alcohol Market)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
In the course of the case reconsideration, Court confirmed legitimacy of FAS decision with regard to the “Association of Operators of Orenburg Regional Alcohol Market”* On 13 February 2015, the 18th Arbitration Appeal Court partly allowed an appeal of the Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS (...)

The Lithuanian Competition Authority fines a cartel in the energy sector (Lukrida / Envija / Manfula)
European Commission (Brussels)
Competition Council Hits Cartel in Energy Sector* On 11 February 2015, the Competition Council (the Council) found that UAB Lukrida (Lukrida) and UAB Manfula (Manfula), the main market players in the construction of cogeneration power plants in Lithuania, sought to restrict competition in the (...)

The Ontario Superior Court of Justice holds that information received by the Competition Authority at the proffer stage of its immunity and leniency programs is not protected from disclosure to other accused persons by settlement privilege (Nestlé Canada)
TSMC (San Francisco)
Proffers to Competition Bureau must be disclosed to accused, court says* Information received by the Competition Bureau at the proffer stage of its Immunity and Leniency Programs is not protected from disclosure to other accused persons by settlement privilege, the Ontario Superior Court of (...)

The Russian Competition Authority opens an inquiry in the bread market
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
FAS imposed a second fine upon a foreign company in two months* At the end of January 2015, the Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS Russia) fined “Linenhall Overseas Limited” 500,000 RUB for failure to submit information within the designated period. The company is registered in British Virgin (...)

The Russian Competition Authority fines two poultry plants for unreasonably increased prices (Ptitsecombinat / Stavropolsky Broiler)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
Stavropol OFAS fined two poultry plants 1.3 million Rubles for unreasonably increased prices* On 2 February 2015, the Office of the Federal Antimonopoly Service in the Stavropol (Stavropol OFAS) fined “Stavropolsky Broiler” OJSC and “Ptitsecombinat” Ltd. 650,000 each for unreasonably growing (...)

The Russian Supreme Court judges that several chemical companies have not fixed monopolistically high prices concerning the apatite concentrate (FosAgro)
Russian Federal Antimonopoly Service (Moscow)
The Supreme Court supported FAS approaches to apatite concentrate pricing* The findings of the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation on a petition of “Mineral Fertilizer Plant of Kirovo-Chepetsk Chemical Works” about actions of the “FosAgro” Group supported the Recommendations of the Federal (...)

The UK High Court explains to companies that the only way to challenge an infringement of the Competition Act is an appeal to the CAT and it has to be made in the applicable time limit (Gallaher / Lindum)
St John’s Chambers (Bristol)
United Kingdom: Competition appeals – speak now or forever hold your peace?* It is not uncommon, where a multi-party infringement of competition law has been established and sanctioned by a competition authority for some, but not all, of the addressees of the authority’s decision to appeal that (...)

The Romanian Competition Council imposes fines on eight undertakings active on the taxi market for a tacit agreement aiming to fix the price for transportation (Pelicanul and Meridian)
Romanian Competition Council (Bucharest)
Fines on taxi market in Bucharest and Ilfov* The Competition Council has sanctioned with fines totaling 2,264,875 lei (505,021 Euro) 8 enterprises active on the taxi transportation market in Bucharest and Ilfov region for participation in a tacit agreement/ concerted practice to fix the tariff (...)

The Romanian Competition Council imposes fines on twenty-five undertakings for implementing price fixing agreements on the retail food market (Mega Image, Metro Cash&Carry, Real Hypermarket)
Romanian Competition Council (Bucharest)
The Competition Council has sanctioned 25 companies on the retail food market* The Competition Council has sanctioned 25 companies on the retail food market (4 retailers and 21 suppliers) with fines totaling 154,029,538 lei (approx. 35 million Euro). The sanctions were applied within the (...)

The US District Court for the Northern District of Ohio approves a plea agreement from a sales manager that conspired to fix prices of automotive hoses (Horie of Toyoda Gosei)
McDermott Will & Emery (Washington)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Brussels)
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McDermott Will & Emery (Düsseldorf)
FORMER TOYODA GOSEI EXECUTIVE PLEADS GUILTY TO PRICE-FIXING, BID-RIGGING* On January 6, 2015, Makoto Horie of Toyoda Gosei North America pled guilty to the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) for conspiring to fix the prices of automotive hoses sold to U.S. companies. Mr. Horie was (...)

The Indian Competition Authority fines a trade association for price fixing and collective boycott (Film Distributors Association of Kerala)
Amit Sibal (New Delhi)
Film Distributor Trade Association fined for price fixing and collective boycott* In its last reported decisions of 2014, the Competition Commission of India (CCI), in two separate cases, fined the Film Distributors Association of Kerala (a state in India) 5% of its turnover (in each case) for (...)

The French Competition Authority imposes heavy fines on several manufacturers of home and personal care products for having implemented concerted practices (Colgate-Palmolive / Henkel / Reckitt Benckiser)
Autorité de la concurrence (Paris)
The Autorité de la concurrence fines concerted practices between manufacturers a total of 345,2 € millions and 605,9 € millions on each market concerned* The Autorité de la concurrence issues today a decision whereby it fines home care and personal care manufacturers for having implemented (...)

The Hungarian Competition Authority accepts the commitments of two water companies regarding the data used for the calculation of water needs and closes the antitrust proceedings against them (Fővárosi Vízművek / Fővárosi Csatornázási Művek)
Hungarian Competition Authority (Budapest)
The proceedings against Fővárosi Vízművek Zrt. and Fővárosi Csatornázási Művek Zrt. have ended with the acceptance of commitments* The Hungarian Competition Authority (Gazdasági Versenyhivatal – GVH) accepted the commitments of Fővárosi Vízművek Zrt. (FVM) and Fővárosi Csatornázási Művek Zrt. (FCSM), (...)

The Italian Competition Authority closes proceedings against several ferry operators finding no evidence of a cartel in the market for maritime services in the Strait of Messina (Servizi di cabotaggio marittimo Stretto di Messina)
Legance - Studio Legale Associato (Rome)
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Legance - Studio Legale Associato
Introduction On 11 December 2014, the Italian Competition Authority (“ICA”) adopted a decision closing the investigation launched in June 2013 against several ferry operators active in the Strait of Messina for an alleged violation of Art. 101 TFEU - Caronte & Tourist S.p.A. (“C&T”), (...)

The EU General Court confirms that the French Council of Pharmacists has infringed art. 101 TFEU but reduces the EC’s fine slightly (Ordre national des pharmaciens)
Stephenson Harwood (London)
Background Under French law, clinical biology analyses may only be carried out in dedicated laboratories under the supervision of a biological doctor or pharmacist. Biological pharmacists hold 95% of the cumulated share of that service market . The National Council of Pharmacists (“Ordre (...)

A US Distrit Court holds that a designer wedding dress line does not constitute a relevant product market (House of Brides / Alfred Angelo)
Sheppard Mullin (Los Angeles)
Allegations That Designer Wedding Dress Line Constitutes A Relevant Product Market Found Implausible* Allegations that a highly specialized designer line of wedding dresses lacks reasonable substitutes fail to support allegations of Sherman Act violations for price fixing and group boycott (...)

The European Court of Justice decides that competition law does not apply to arrangements among freelance substitute orchestra musicians that aim at improving their working conditions if these musicians can be qualified as ‘workers’ (Kunsten Informatie en Media)
ClientEarth (Bruxelles)
Albany revisited: the Court directs NCA to carry a more social tune* In C-413/13 FNV Kunsten Informatie en Media, the Court decided that competition law does not apply to arrangements among freelance substitute orchestra musicians that aim to improving their working conditions. In so doing, (...)