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Focus Antitrust - 27 July

27 July 2016

In The News

Court of Appeal upholds tobacco fines appeal

The Court of Appeal has ruled that the CMA must repay the fines levied on Somerfield and Gallagher in relation to the tobacco retail pricing decision. Somerfield and Gallagher argued successfully that they should have been treated in the same way as another party to the investigation (TM Retail). TM Retail had been given assurances that it would be able to take advantage of any successful third party appeal to secure repayment of the fine paid under its early resolution agreement. Click here.

European Commission fines truck producers €2.93 billion for participating in a cartel

The European Commission has found that MAN, Volvo/Renault, Daimler, Iveco, and DAF colluded for 14 years on truck pricing and on passing on the costs of compliance with stricter emission rules.  The Commission has imposed a record fine of €2,926,499,000. Click here.


Articles 101 and 102
  • The European Court of Justice has dismissed a further appeal against the European Commission’s pre-stressing steel cartel decision. Click here.
  • The European Commission has released German energy firm E.ON from commitments to reduce long-term bookings on the German gas grid almost five years ahead of schedule. The Commission considers that competition on the relevant market has now increased significantly. Click here.
  • The European Commission has accepted the commitments offered by Paramount in the cross-border pay-TV services case, which were consulted on in April 2016. Paramount has committed not to enforce or introduce contractual clauses that prevent broadcasters from accepting unsolicited requests for their pay-TV services from consumers located outside their licensed territory. Click here
  • The European Commission has formally accepted commitments to licence inputs for credit default swaps, offered separately by the International Swaps and Derivatives Association Inc and information service provider Markit. The Commission had concerns relating to the licensing of intellectual property that is needed to offer trading services on the market for credit default swaps and considers that the commitments will address these concerns. Click here.
  • The European Court of Justice has issued a judgment in relation to the liability of a company for anti-competitive actions committed by its service provider. The case concerned the actions of a legal adviser who acted for three participants in a tender and arranged for one of them to offer the most competitive price. The ECJ held that a company may be held liable in these circumstances if one of the following conditions is met: (i) the service provider was in fact acting under the direction or control of the company; (ii) the company was aware of the anti-competitive objectives pursued by its competitors and the service provider and intended to contribute to them by its own conduct; or (iii) the company could reasonably have foreseen the anti-competitive acts of its competitors and the service provider and was prepared to accept the risk which they entailed. Click here
  • Following an in-depth phase 2 review, the European Commission has approved the acquisition of Arianespace by Airbus Safran Launchers (ASL), a joint venture between Airbus and Safran, subject to conditions. The Commission had concerns that the transaction would give rise to flows of sensitive information between Airbus and Arianespace to the detriment of competing satellite manufacturers and launch service providers. The Commission's approval is conditional on the implementation of commitments offered by the companies which are intended to address these concerns. Click here.


  • An online poster seller has settled with the CMA as part of a cartel investigation. Trod Limited has admitted agreeing with one of its competing online sellers, GB eye Limited, that they would not undercut each other’s prices for posters and frames sold on Amazon’s UK website. The agreement was implemented by using automated repricing software which the parties each configured to give effect to the agreement. Click here.
  • The CMA has decided that Ladbrokes and Coral must sell around 350 to 400 shops in order to obtain clearance for their merger. Click here.
  • The Court of Appeal has dismissed FIPO’s appeal against the CMA’s private healthcare market investigation final report. Click here.

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

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