From December 2010 to February 2011, the FCO investigated a planned settlement between the parties to a tender dispute in the public transport sector. The FCO suspected that the planned settlement would infringe the cartel prohibition (“buying competition”). The FCO issued a case report on February 25, 2011. The case illustrates that the FCO, which…

The German Federal Cartel Office (“FCO”) fined three manufacturers of fire-fighting vehicles on February 10, 2011, imposing € 20.5 million in total. The FCO found that the companies had engaged in bid rigging since 2001 (price-fixing, quota agreements and market sharing). As usual, the FCO did not only fine the companies, but also the individuals…

On June 10, 2010, the Düsseldorf Court of Appeals issued a decision that increased the hurdles for obtaining access to essential facilities in Germany in practice (see WuW/DE-R 2941 et seq.). The case concerns interim proceedings against a FCO decision. The FCO had found that Scandlines, the owner and operator of the ferry port Puttgarden,…

The FCO issued three cartel decisions in June 2010: it imposed a (second) fine on coffee roasters on June 9 (€ 30 million), on manufacturers of ophthalmic lenses on June 10 (€ 115 million), and on a manufacturer of cable fillings on June 24 (€0.4 million). All of these decisions involved settlements (and the ophthalmic…

On April 20, 2010, the German Federal Court of Justice quashed the Düsseldorf Court of Appeal’s decision in Phonak/GN, which upheld the FCO’s merger prohibition of the acquisition of GN ReSound by Phonak, both active in hearing aids in Germany. The merger would have combined number two and four in the market, with aggregated market…