The General Court (GC) ruling of September 26 in Case T-574/14 constitutes an important (and possibly final) episode in the European Union’s (EU) review of the Spanish “dual pricing” and parallel trade saga. The GC found that the European Commission was not obliged to adopt a new decision as to whether an agreement GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) had put…

On 24 July 2018, the European Commission (“Commission”) fined, in four separate decisions, consumer electronics manufacturers Asus, Denon & Marantz, Philips and Pioneer for imposing fixed or minimum resale prices on their online retailers. The total fine imposed on the four manufacturers amounts to more than EUR 111 million. The infringements related to a variety of…

Document requests issued by the EU Commission (EC) have become common in complex EU merger cases. A few years ago, the EC would only ask for several hundred documents in such cases – now it has become standard to request several hundred thousand documents from each of the parties to the transaction, often within a short time period (once…

On 16 July 2018, the EU Commission (EC) adopted its “Code of Best Practices for the conduct of State aid control procedure” (Best Practices). The Code replaces the Notice on a Code of Best Practices adopted in 2009 (2009 Code) and integrates the Simplified Procedure Notice of 2009. Over recent years, the EC has implemented…

The EU General Court recently upheld an infringement decision of the EU Commission (EC), in which the investment bank Goldman Sachs (GS) was found jointly and severally liable for violating Article 101 TFEU as a result of indirectly owning / holding a stake in Prysmian, a company who participated in cartel activities relating to high…

Gun-jumping relates to the premature implementation of a transaction prior to obtaining clearance from the relevant competition authorities. It is currently a “hot topic” as enforcement levels across the globe have increased significantly in recent years. In April 2018, the European Commission (EC) imposed a gun-jumping fine of €124.5 million on the multinational cable and…

Today’s decision imposes a record fine of €4.34 billion on Google. In such an innovative and competitive industry, a decision and fine on this scale sends the wrong message. This post argues there is no obvious foreclosure, explains why Microsoft/WMP is an inadequate precedent (though Microsoft/Skype, in contrast, is directly on point), and asks whether…

On April 11, 2018, the European Commission published a proposed new EU law as part of a package of consumer protection measures. The proposed new law would introduce the first Europe-wide consumer class action system, exposing companies in a broad range of industries to new risks with potentially huge financial implications. The proposed new law…

In a judgment dated 5 February 2018, the General Court of the EU (the “General Court”) rejected the appeal by German retailer Edeka–Handelsgesellschaft Hessenring’s (“Edeka”) against a decision by the European Commission (the “Commission”) refusing Edeka’s application to obtain access to material classified by the Commission as confidential during its investigation into alleged manipulation of…