The CNMC closes medical gases investigation due to insufficient evidence

In a decision of July 13, 2017, the National Commission for Markets and Competition (Comisión Nacional de los Mercados y la Competencia or "CNMC") decided to close an investigation in relation to medical gases after concluding that there was insufficient evidence to prove the existence of practices contrary to Article 1 of Law 15/2007 for the Defense of Competition. Following dawn raids carried out at the premises of Linde, Air Liquide, Carburos Metálicos, Contse and Praxair in July 2015, the CNMC opened a formal investigation in January 2016 against a total of ten companies suspected...

ADVOCATE GENERAL WAHL CONCLUDES THAT RESTRICTIONS ON SALES THROUGH ONLINE PLATFORMS ARE LEGAL

The Advocate General’s Opinion regarding the preliminary ruling before the European Court of Justice in Case C-230/16, Coty Germany, has been issued today. He suggests the European Court of Justice to conclude that a supplier of luxury cosmetics can legally impose certain contractual limitations on members of its selective distribution network, namely the possibility to prevent them from selling through online third party platforms such as Amazon and eBay. Coty is a manufacturer and wholesaler of luxury cosmetics. One of its authorized distributors, Parfümerie Akzente GmbH, sells through physical and online stores (both through its...

CNMC closes IMS Health abuse of dominance investigation with commitments

In a decision of July 13, 2017 the National Commission for Markets and Competition (Comisión Nacional de los Mercados y la Competencia or "CNMC") accepted commitments proposed by IMS Health, S.A. ("IMS") to close an abuse of dominance investigation in the market for the provision of sales information on pharmaceutical products (also known as "sales tracking data").

Pricing algorithms: next enforcement challenge for Competition Authorities?

The potential anticompetitive impact of the automation of decision-making has become a topic of great interest in recent times. Self-learning pricing algorithms are focusing the agenda from the European competition authorities due to two potential harmful effects on business conduct: price discrimination and collusive practices. It is precisely the second effect that is generating greater uncertainty and debate. One of the key questions is whether it is possible to design a fully-autonomous software capable of colluding without any explicit human intervention and contact between competitors.