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Focus Antitrust - 2 December 2015

2 December 2015

In The News

CMA to refer petrol station merger unless undertakings given

The CMA has decided to refer MRH’s acquisition of 78 Esso petrol stations for a phase 2 investigation unless MRH offers satisfactory undertakings in lieu of a reference. The CMA considers that the acquisition raises competition concerns in Cambridge and Brighton. Click here.

ECJ issues judgment on application of Article 101 to non-compete clauses in commercial property leases

The ECJ has issued a judgment on a reference from a Latvian court on the application of Article 101 to a commercial lease agreement for the letting of a large shop located in a shopping centre, which contained a clause granting the lessee the right to oppose the letting by the lessor, in that centre, of commercial premises to other tenants.

The ECJ held that the mere fact that a commercial lease agreement contains such a clause does not mean that the object of that agreement is to restrict competition. It also held that commercial lease agreements of this kind may be considered to be an integral part of an agreement having the effect of preventing, restricting or distorting competition within the meaning of Article 101, if they make an appreciable contribution to the closing-off of the relevant market. Click here.


Articles 101 and 102

The Advocate General's opinion has been handed down on five appeals against the judgments of the General Court in relation to the bathroom fittings cartel case. The Advocate General considers that one of the judgments should be annulled and that the calculation of fines in one of the other judgments was flawed. Click here.


  • The CMA has accepted undertakings in lieu of a reference in relation to The Original Bowling Company’s acquisition of Bowlplex. The undertakings require the sale of six ten-pin bowling centres to Essenden Limited, owner of Tenpin Limited. The six centres are in Bristol, Camberley, Cardiff, Dudley, Castleford and Glasgow. Click here.
  • BCA has offered the CMA undertakings in lieu of a reference in relation to its completed acquisition of SMA. Click here.

For more information please contact Paul Stone on +44 (0)20 7203 5110 or at paul.stone@crsblaw.com