Apple’s App Store commission fee and (anti-competitive) governance: when a platform’s zero-pricing strategy becomes expensive

Apple’s App Store commission fee and (anti-competitive) governance: when a platform’s zero-pricing strategy becomes expensive

These days Apple is at the Supreme Court trying to defend its pricing scheme for the App Store, which is currently under fire for being potentially abusive with respect consumers that end up paying perhaps quite a bit more for their apps than they should. Although it is uncertain whether the claimants will be allowed to proceed with the claim, […]

Market definition for two-(or multi) sided platforms – demand interdependence and substitution as guiding principles

Market definition for two-(or multi) sided platforms – demand interdependence and substitution as guiding principles

The past year has led to a lot of discussion on the relation between competition law and (online) platforms and a lot of disagreement on how competition law should apply in such cases as displayed by comments on the major cases of Amex and Google. Unsurprisingly, one of the most contentious aspects of these cases was the market definition. It […]

Price monitoring software and competition – new possibilities for RPM in absence of sufficient deterrence

Price monitoring software and competition – new possibilities for RPM in absence of sufficient deterrence

Shortly after the dropping the A-bomb on Google for its alleged tying practices, the Commission imposed fines of over €111 million on Asus, Denon & Marantz, Philips and Pioneer for fixing the minimum resale prices of their online retailers. This recent case shows that the Commission is serious about taking on competition law infringements in the online sphere, however, it […]

Tales of two-sided markets, market definitions and anti-competitive effects – insights from Ohio v. American Express

Tales of two-sided markets, market definitions and anti-competitive effects – insights from Ohio v. American Express

  The case of Ohio v. Amex is the final phase of a long legal battle that started back in 2010 where Amex was accused of infringing section 1 of the Sherman Act for imposing its anti-steering provisions on merchants accepting Amex. While not delivering on all fronts, the case of Amex is an important one in the context of […]

When Algorithmic Pricing meets Concerted Practices- the case of Partneo

When Algorithmic Pricing meets Concerted Practices- the case of Partneo

Algorithmic collusion, algorithmic cartels, AI price fixing cartels and many other pseudo computer science themes have become a source of great interest for competition law authorities, practitioners and academics. The allure of these topics is understandable; the idea that cartels can come into existence without human intervention is a fascinating matter despite the fact that fully automated (not to mention […]

Online platforms and refusal to deal – Unlockd vs. Google- a seminal case in the making?

Online platforms and refusal to deal – Unlockd vs. Google- a seminal case in the making?

The recent standoff between advertisement application developer Unlockd and Google, concerning the removal of Unlockd from the Google Play Store and AdMob marketplace, may turn out to be one of the most important competition law cases of the year. This case, which will likely require a competition law review of Google’s terms and conditions for these platforms, provides the opportunity […]

Price discrimination and abuse of dominance – MEO Case C-525/16

Price discrimination and abuse of dominance – MEO Case C-525/16

The recent case of MEO delivers a meaningful clarification concerning the importance of an effects analysis in the case of art. 102 (c) TFEU. While not providing an ultimate solution for all comparable future cases, the CJEU in this case clearly indicates that term ‘competitive disadvantage’ constitutes an independent element of art. 102 (c) TFEU that requires proof.   Background […]

Online platforms and abuse of dominance – the case of Funda Real Estate

Online platforms and abuse of dominance – the case of Funda Real Estate

The application of EU competition law to online platforms has been subject to much debate in the course of the past two years. The EU Commission and several national competition law authorities have launched multiple studies in order to identify the possible challenges in this context and establish an action plan. The distinguishing characteristics of online platforms including: the reliance […]

When the industry strikes back- UPS claims 1.7 billion Euro for the blocked merger with TNT

When the industry strikes back- UPS claims 1.7 billion Euro for the blocked merger with TNT

The recent fines imposed by the Commission on companies have made headlines quite a few times since the beginning of 2018. This growing press coverage is undeniably linked to size of the fines as well as the parties on whom these were imposed. However while the Commission was busy fining companies for their anticompetitive behavior, United Parcel Services (UPS) decided […]