EU Foreign Subsidies Regulation: State of Play

The process for introducing new EU rules on companies that receive foreign subsidies has really sped up. EU lawmakers are now in so-called “trilogue” discussions meant to finalise the “Foreign Subsidies Regulation” still this year. The regulation will affect companies in M&A transactions and in public procurement bids, and will basically introduce yet another review … Continue reading EU Foreign Subsidies Regulation: State of Play

Cross-border cooperation of regulators – a trend for many topics

While cooperations between competing undertakings stay under heavy scrutiny, there seems to be a trend of regulators cooperating cross-border. Those cooperations often concern (a growing number of) topics that are perceived to be wider than national, and that regulators might think can only be properly tackled together. Here is a rundown of fora which have … Continue reading Cross-border cooperation of regulators – a trend for many topics

Dual distribution, information exchange, and the EC’s consultation – practical and policy highlights

The European Commission has launched an “additional” public consultation on guidance regarding information exchange in dual distribution. More guidance is welcome, but timing is tight. This post provides a short overview of what the guidance/consultation are about and of their policy implications. The Vertical Block Exemption Regulation (VBER) and the accompanying Vertical Guidelines lay out … Continue reading Dual distribution, information exchange, and the EC’s consultation – practical and policy highlights

Not always against big tech: Bundeskartellamt terminates proceeding against Google

Nearly unnoticed by the antitrust world, the German Bundeskartellamt has terminated proceedings against Google regarding so-called “Transport Layer Security Certificates”. With nearly daily decisions or new investigations against big tech, the termination of a proceeding without a finding or a fine appears almost rare. Here is a short run through the when, how, and why … Continue reading Not always against big tech: Bundeskartellamt terminates proceeding against Google

A few thoughts on the European Commission’s Internet of Things Sector Inquiry

The European Commission has published its final report on the sector inquiry into the consumer Internet of Things (IoT), i.e., into “smart devices” like wearables, smart speakers or smart home products. The document is a pretty crisp summary of the consumer IoT as the Commission sees it and contains quite a number of hints on … Continue reading A few thoughts on the European Commission’s Internet of Things Sector Inquiry

Facebook, Giphy, Kustomer – Regulators’ views diverging?

The UK competition regulator CMA has ordered Facebook* to divest Giphy. Earlier this year, the CMA cleared Facebook’s acquisition of Kustomer in Phase I, a deal now under heavy scrutiny by the European Commission. As much as antitrust regulators emphasize a tough stance on acquisitions by big tech, is there a risk of diverging views? … Continue reading Facebook, Giphy, Kustomer – Regulators’ views diverging?

Joint purchasing – Three key points in the current clash

There currently is much debate about how joint purchasing should be assessed going forward, and whether existing purchasing alliances should face greater scrutiny. This piece highlights three key points on joint purchasing, antitrust, and the involved politics. The European Commission lays out its view of joint purchasing in its Horizontal Guidelines, published already in 2011. … Continue reading Joint purchasing – Three key points in the current clash