This is our monthly summary of a selection of the latest public announcements and decisions concerning Austrian, German and EU competition law. Please bear in mind that we are unable to guarantee the accuracy, relevance, timeliness, or completeness of any information provided on third-party websites.
Type of publication
E-Control and AFCA set up task force to investigate situation on the electricity and gas market
“The Austrian Federal Competition Authority is currently focusing its efforts on markets that are of particular importance to both consumers and the economy as a whole. This includes energy markets. The current challenges in this sector can only be tackled by the AFCA and E-Control working closely together,” explains interim Director General Natalie Harsdorf-Borsch. [See more]
AFCA files request for examination of MEDIAFOREUROPE N.V.; ProSiebenSat.1 Media SE merger with Cartel Court
"The media merger of MFE MEDIAFOREUROPE N.V.; ProSiebenSat.1 Media SE was notified on 13 December 2022. MFE MEDIAFOREUROPE N.V plans to raise its current stake in ProSiebenSat.1 Media SE (P7S1), before P7S1’s next ordinary annual general meeting on 2 May 2023, to 29.9% of the voting rights, thereby gaining de facto sole control of P7S1.
AFCA refers examination of Adobe Inc., USA/Figma, Inc. USA merger to European Commission
"Following a preliminary examination, the proposed merger threatens to significantly affect trade between Member States, for example because the markets concerned are at least EEA-wide in scope, Adobe and Figma are active in all Member States, and the target company Figma has subsidiaries in four Member States." [See more]
Statement of objections issued against associations of medical aids providers
"The Bundeskartellamt has sent its preliminary investigation results in the proceeding for coordinated price increases to the detriment of health insurance companies to the working group of associations of medical aids providers (referred to as ARGE) for comments. ARGE represents a large part of the relevant medical aids suppliers (especially medical supply stores providing rollators, sitting aids, etc.) in the rehabilitation and care sector." [See more]
Bundeskartellamt initiates proceedings against PayPal
"The Bundeskartellamt has initiated a proceeding against PayPal (Europe) S.à.r.l. et Cie, S.C.A. on account of practices possibly foreclosing competitors and restricting price competition. The proceeding deals with PayPal’s “Rules about surcharging” and the “Presentation of PayPal” set out in its user agreement applicable in Germany." [See more]
Merger between roof tile manufacturers: Wienerberger can take over Terreal
"Andreas Mundt, President of the Bundeskartellamt: “As a result of the merger, the well-known roof tile brands “Creaton” and “Koramic” will be offered by one and the same company in the future. Wienerberger will become the largest provider of clay roof tiles in Germany. We have therefore examined the case in great detail. Ultimately, it became clear that sufficient competitive pressure will still be exerted by other companies, and consumers will still have sufficient alternatives to choose from even after the merger.” [See more]
Statement of objections issued against Google´s data processing terms
"On 23 December 2022 the Bundeskartellamt sent Alphabet Inc., Mountain View, USA, Google Ireland Ltd., Dublin, Ireland, and Google Germany GmbH, Hamburg, Germany, its preliminary legal assessment in the proceeding initiated due to Google’s data processing terms. At this stage of the proceeding, the Bundeskartellamt assumes that the new provisions for large digital companies (Section 19a of the German Competition Act, GWB) are applicable and Google thus has to change its data processing terms and its associated practices." [See more]
Austrian Competition Courts
OLG Wien 25 Kt 4722h, 24/01/2023 – Cartel
A fine of EUR 100,000 is imposed on the defendants in respect of a single complex and continuous infringement of Section 1 of the Cartel Act and Article 101 TFEU, which took the form of vertical agreements with manufacturers of school bags and backpacks concerning resale prices in violation of antitrust law that had as their object the establishment of a fixed and minimum price level for these products and, in individual cases, for accessories, in the period from February 2015 to February 2019.[See more]
Judgment (in German)
OLG Wien 24 Kt 3/22d, 17/01/2023 – Mergers
A fine of EUR 220,000 is imposed on the defendants for providing incorrect and/or misleading information in the course of the merger proceedings. [See more]
Judgment (in German)
Antitrust: Commission invites comments on draft Guidelines for sustainability agreements in agriculture
"The European Commission […] launched a public consultation inviting all interested parties to comment on its draft proposal for Guidelines on how to design sustainability agreements in the field of agriculture (‘Guidelines') using the novel exclusion from EU competition rules introduced during the recent reform of the common agricultural policy (‘CAP')." [See more]
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+43 1 514 35 581
Dr. Anna Wolf-Posch, LL.M.
+ 43 1 514 35 581
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+ 43 1 514 35 271
Mag. Philipp Schaubach, LL.M.
+ 43 1 514 35 0
Mag. Zakar Stepanyan
+ 43 1 514 35 0
Mag. Agnes Lackenberger, LL.M.
+43 1 514 35
Benno Siftar, LL.M.
+43 1 514 35 586
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