The Court of Justice of the European Union (“ECJ”) handed down its ruling in the appeal by the Italian company Eni SpA (“Eni”) (one of thirteen cartel members) against the General Court’s (“GC”) judgment in the synthetic rubber cartel case. In 2006, the Commission imposed fines totalling over EUR 519 million on 13 companies for having participated in a cartel on the market for butadiene rubber and emulsion styrene-butadiene rubber. As regards the Italian company Eni and its subsidiary Polimeri Europa SpA (wholly owned and now Versalis SpA) (“Versalis”), the Commission increased the basic amount of the fine by 50% for repeated infringements to a total of EUR 272.25 million. In 2007, the General Court annulled the Commission’s decision to the extent it concerned certain participant companies. As to Eni and its subsidiary Versalis, the GC reduced the fine imposed to EUR 181.5 million, considering that the development of the structure and control of the companies involved was particularly complex and that the Commission had not proved that the same undertakings had repeated an infringement. Eni lodged a further appeal before the ECJ claiming that the GC should have annulled the Commission decision to the extent that it imputed to Eni the liability for the infringement committed by Versalis and/or Syndial SpA (another company in the Eni group). In its judgment the ECJ recalled that the conduct of a subsidiary may be imputed to the parent company particularly where the subsidiary does not autonomously determine its conduct on the market but mostly applies the instructions given to it by the parent company. In case a parent company holds all or almost all of the capital in a subsidiary which has infringed EU competition rules, there is a rebuttable presumption that that parent company exercises actual decisive influence over its subsidiary. The ECJ found that in this particular case Eni held for the entire duration of the infringement in question, directly or indirectly, more than 99% of the capital in the two companies. The ECJ further found that Eni had failed to rebut the presumption of parent company’s decisive influence. Therefore, the ECJ dismissed the appeal in its entirety. Source: Commission Press Release 8/5/2013