Newsbulletin January 2023

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]

Press release




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.
The planned merger falls under the notification obligation according to the European Merger Regulation. It will therefore be examined by the European Commission in relation to its impact on competition, with the sole purpose of examining the effect on media plurality (§ 12 and § 13 of the Federal Cartel Act – KartG). The Austrian Federal Competition Authority (AFCA) is entitled to examine mergers of media companies or media support companies pursuant to § 8 KartG or to request an in-depth review pursuant to § 11 KartG if it is expected that a media merger will affect media plurality (§ 13 para. 1 KartG).
The KartG defines media plurality structurally as the diversity of independent media companies that are not affiliated to each other as defined in § 7, thereby ensuring media coverage that takes into account a variety of opinions." [See more]

Press release




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]

Press release





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]

Press release




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]

Press release




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]

Press release




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]

Press release

Austrian Competition Courts




OLG Wien 25 Kt 4722h, 24/01/2023 – Cartel
Date of the decision: 14/07/2022

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
Date of the decision: 14/07/2022

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]

Press release

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us:

Dr. Bernhard Kofler-Senoner, LL.M


+43 1 514 35 581

Dr. Anna Wolf-Posch, LL.M.


+ 43 1 514 35 581

MMag. Dr. Michael Mayer


+ 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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