Photo of Laurie-Anne Grelier

Laurie-Anne Grelier Laurie-Anne Grelier assists global companies, especially Asian multinationals, with navigating complex areas of European competition law, including antitrust and cartel investigations, the clearance of mergers, the structuring of distribution, collaborative and other commercial arrangements, and issues related to abuse of dominant position. Ms. Grelier also assists these companies in litigation before the European Courts, as well as with state aid and trade matters.

The French Competition Authority (FCA) is currently investigating the mobile app market.  In the context of the publication of the 2012 Annual Report, FCA’s President Bruno Lasserre revealed that the authority is concerned about the current structure of the mobile app market, which operates in “silos”, i.e., ecosystems built on a smartphone/tablet OS

E-book pricing is under antitrust review on both sides of the Atlantic.  The U.S. Department of Justice filed suit against two publishers and Apple on 11 April 2012 in the Southern District of New York Federal Court, while settling with three other publishers (the settlement was approved by the court on 6 September 2012).  On the other side of the Atlantic, the European Commission concludes its market-test today of commitments offered by four publishers (Harper Collins, Holtzbrinck/Macmillan, Simon & Schuster and Hachette) and Apple to settle an investigation that was opened in December last year. 

The European Commission took the preliminary view that the publishers may have colluded, with Apple’s facilitation, to jointly switch from a wholesale model to an agency model with the same key terms for the distribution of e-books.  (The agency model shifts retail pricing authority to the publisher, with the retailer taking a commission on the retail price as the publisher’s agent).  The Commission’s preliminary view is that the object of this concerted practice was to raise retail prices of e-books in the EEA or to prevent the emergence of lower prices in the EEA for e-books.  
Continue Reading E-Books Pricing: Far from the End of the Story