Following an investigation, the European Commission (Commission) has uncovered four separate cartel arrangements affecting the markets for clothing fasteners (zips, snap buttons, rivets etc) and attaching machines both in the EU and abroad. Investigations disclosed evidence that senior managers in the company were involved in meetings and discussions involving cartel offences (such as price fixing and market sharing). Seven companies were collectively fined over €328m for their participation. The YKK group of Japan received the highest fine (€150.3m) followed by the UK's Coates group (€122.4m) and Germany's Prym group was fined €40.5m. It was a bad week for the haberdashery industry. A few days before the announcement of the fines for the fastening cartel, the Court of First Instance (in cases T-36/05 & T-30/05) confirmed the European Commission's 2004 finding that Coates and Prym had participated in a cartel involving needles and other haberdashery products. The Court however reduced the level of the fines imposed on Prym from €30m to €27m and on Coates from €30m to €20m due to weaknesses in the Commission's evidence.