This blog is written by Pauline Kuipers and Janneke Kohlen, Bird & Bird LLP Introduction The Dutch competition authority, ACM, initiated a market study in 2018 into the effect of the introduction of biosimilars on the competition between TNF alfa inhibitors. TNF-alfa inhibitors are biological medicines that are mainly used by rheumatoid arthritis patients, but…

Introduction On 4 July 2019 a long-awaited Dutch legislative proposal regarding sustainability initiatives (“Wet ruimte voor duurzaamheidsinitiatieven“) was submitted to the Dutch House of Representatives. The proposal aims to foster collaboration between undertakings towards sustainability goals by removing the barrier of competition law. This is an interesting development because of at least two reasons: (i)…

Introduction The growth of e-commerce over the last decade has had a significant impact on most if not all retail markets. Trends like the increased importance of online sales, price transparency and the emergence of new market players such as online platforms significantly affected the distribution and pricing strategies of both manufacturers and retailers, not…

Introduction The Authority for Consumers and Markets (“ACM“, the Dutch competition authority) was in 2017 – after years of silence – finally able to fine an undertaking for abuse of dominance. A heavy fine of almost € 41 million was imposed on the state-owned Dutch railway operator N.V. Nederlandse Spoorwegen (“NS“). According to ACM, NS abused…

After Google has been fined several times for breach of (EU) competition rules the last couple of years, it might now be Apple’s turn. Last month (March 2019), Spotify filed a complaint against Apple with the European Commission. The Dutch Authority for Consumers & Markets (“ACM”) immediately responded by stating that ACM is finalizing its…

Introduction On 19 March 2019, the highest administrative court in the Netherlands (het College van Beroep voor het bedrijfsleven, “CBb”) ruled that the Dutch Competition Authority (“the ACM”) can hold private equity investors liable for cartel infringements committed by their portfolio companies.[1] According to the ACM, and now confirmed by the CBb, the private equity…

On 26 February 2019, the Dutch Authority for Consumers & Markets (“ACM”) published renewed guidelines on both vertical and horizontal restraints. These documents are likely published to reflect the new strategy of the ACM: the stricter enforcement of vertical and horizontal restraints with a focus on vertical price fixing, online sales restraints, purchasing cartels and agreements…

On 21 December 2018, the Dutch Authority for Consumers & Markets (“ACM”) published guidelines on its simplified settlement procedure (“Settlement Guidelines”).[1] Such a procedure can be followed if the ACM intends to impose a fine and the undertaking or person involved is prepared to admit the allegations and to accept the fine. The ACM can…

I. Introduction to the internet consultation On 19 December 2018 the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs and Climate (“Ministry”) started an internet consultation on competition law and online platforms, in particular on the question whether additional regulation is required to deal with the challenges these platforms bring. Online platforms, such as Google, Amazon and Facebook,…