Tag Archives: competition

The UK Government Seeks Views on the Regulation of Digital Markets for a Post-Brexit Great Britain

The UK Government’s Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has just released a 75-page Green Paper on Modernising Consumer Markets, setting out the Government’s main priorities for the digital economy in a post-Brexit Britain. The Green Paper reflects on the current state of consumer markets and regulation, and lays down the key challenges and … Continue Reading

Ad Blocking Declared Legal: German Court Dismisses Discrimination Claims Brought by Publishers, but AdBlock Plus Maker Eyeo is Not Home Free Yet

The Regional Court in Hamburg rejected complaints by newspapers Zeit Online and Handelsblatt seeking to have Eyeo GmbH prohibited from selling its AdBlock Plus software. The ruling establishes the important principle that ad-blocking is legal, however there are other cases pending against AdBlock Plus in Germany that suggest that there may be more to come … Continue Reading

Dutch Competition Authority Updates Guidance on Distribution Agreements

On 20 April 2015 the Dutch Authority for Consumers and Markets (“ACM”) published new guidance regarding its enforcement priorities in relation to distribution agreements, noting that its enforcement efforts will be focused on agreements having the most significant impact on consumer welfare.  The 28-page document explains that before opening an investigation, the ACM will first … Continue Reading

EU Announces E-Commerce Sector Inquiry

Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager announced today during a speech at the Bundeskartellamt (German Competition Authority) International Conference on Competition her intention to launch a sector inquiry in the e-commerce sector. The sector inquiry will be formally proposed to the Commission in May. Preliminary findings on the sector inquiry could be ready in mid-2016. Commissioner Vestager … Continue Reading

Germany Closes Price Parity Investigation But Antitrust Scrutiny on Online Platforms Continues in Europe

On 26 November 2013, the German Federal Cartel Office (FCO) announced that it ended the probe into Amazon’s price parity policy (the “Policy”).  The Policy required that the price of an item offered by a retailer on Amazon’s online marketplace platform, Amazon Marketplace, should not be higher than the retailer’s lowest offer for that item … Continue Reading

Amazon Informs German and UK Competition Authorities of Its Plan to End Price Parity Policy

In February 2013, the German competition authority (Bundeskartellamt) launched a survey into Amazon.de’s price parity policy for its Marketplace platform.  (See our previous post.)  This policy requires that the price of each product that a retailer offers on Amazon.de should not be higher than the retailer’s lowest offer for that product through any other online … Continue Reading

French Competition Authority Probes Whether Mobile App Stores “Lock-In” Users

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.g., Apple … Continue Reading

What does the Commission’s Reuters Instrument Codes settlement mean for refusals to license essential inputs?

by Miranda Cole and Christos Malamataris On 20 March, the European Commission published its decision settling the Reuters Instrument Codes (“RICs”) Case.  The Commission’s investigation focused on whether the restrictions imposed by Thomson Reuters (previously Reuters) on the licensing of RICs amounted to the abuse of a dominant position (in breach of Article 102 TFEU) … Continue Reading

SpectrumWatch: FCC Approves T-Mobile/MetroPCS Merger, Citing Competitive Benefits

On Tuesday, the Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) approved the proposed merger of cellular service providers T-Mobile USA and MetroPCS.  In its written opinion and order, the FCC’s Wireless Bureau concluded that the proposed merger would benefit competition in the wireless market by, among other things, providing the combined company with greater spectrum resources for its … Continue Reading

E-Books Pricing: The EU Antitrust Chapter Is About To Close

The EU E-books antitrust probe is quasi-closed: the EU Commission announced yesterday that it accepted and made legally binding the commitments offered by Apple and four publishers to settle the investigation that was opened in December last year. The Commission was investigating whether the publishers may have colluded, with Apple’s facilitation, to jointly switch from … Continue Reading
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