EU antitrust investigators raid offices of online electronics retailers

EU antitrust investigators raid offices of online electronics retailers

PanARMENIAN.Net - European Union antitrust investigators have raided the offices of a number of companies involved in the online sale of consumer electronics products, officials said Wednesday, March 25, according to PCWorld.

The raids were part of an ongoing investigation into possible anticompetitive agreements between electronics retailers and manufacturers, a European Commission spokesman said in an email.

“The Commission has concerns that the companies concerned may have violated EU antitrust rules that prohibit anticompetitive agreements or concerted practices,” he added.

The raids are a follow-up of inspections conducted in December 2013, when the Commission raided Samsung Electronics, Philips and electronics retailer Media-Saturn, among other companies.

The Commission has grounds to suspect the companies raided have restricted online sales of consumer electronics products and small domestic appliances, which might lead to higher prices for consumers or the unavailability of products in some online shops.

Unannounced inspections are a preliminary step in investigations into suspected anticompetitive practices. There is no legal deadline for these investigations to be completed. If a company is found to have participated in an anti-competitive agreement, it can be fined up to 10 percent of its annual turnover.

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