In The News

CMA concludes criminal cartel investigation in precast concrete drainage products case

The CMA has determined that there is insufficient evidence to charge any further individuals with the criminal cartel offence in its investigation into the supply of precast concrete drainage products. The criminal proceedings in relation to one individual, Barry Kenneth Cooper, and the related civil cartel investigation remain ongoing. Click here.

CMA revises de minimis guidance for mergers

Following consultation, the CMA has decided to raise the figure for markets generally considered as sufficiently important to warrant a merger reference from above £10 million to above £15 million. It has also raised the figure for markets generally considered not sufficiently important to warrant a merger reference from below £3 million to below £5 million. Where the size of the market is between these figures, the CMA will continue to assess whether the expected harm resulting from the merger would be materially greater than the cost of an investigation. Click here.

CMA fines lighting company £2.7 million for restricting online prices charged by retailers

The CMA has fined the National Lighting Company £2.7 million for imposing minimum resale prices on its online retailers. The company achieved this by setting a maximum discount off the recommended resale price that resellers were allowed to offer. The fine was increased by 25% because the company did not take account of an earlier warning letter from the CMA. Click here.

EU

Articles 101 and 102

  • The European Commission has readopted a cartel settlement decision, fining Printeos for its participation in the paper envelope cartel, following the annulment of the original decision against Printeos by the General Court due to lack of sufficient reasoning concerning discretionary fine reductions. Click here.

UK

CMA

  • The CMA is proposing to refer Electro Rent's acquisition of Microlease for an in-depth phase 2 merger investigation, unless the parties are able to offer suitable undertakings. The CMA is concerned that the merger could substantially lessen competition in respect of the rental of equipment used to test and measure the performance of a wide range of electronic devices. Click here.
  • The CMA has issued its provisional findings in relation to the merger between Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (CMFT) and University Hospital of South Manchester NHS Foundation Trust (UHSM). The CMA has provisionally found that the merger could have some effect on competition and patient choice in the supply of elective services and some specialised services. The CMA will now look in detail at patient benefits resulting from the merger to see if these outweigh any concerns. Click here.