Association of camera distributors has coordinated prices and exchanged information about its members prices and other competitive parameters

04. December 2017

On 1 December 2017, the Danish Competition Council (DCC) ruled in a case concerning anticompetitive behaviour regarding the camera market.

The DCC ruled, that the Danish association of camera distributors, called Team DS, has coordinated prices and exchanged information about its members prices and other competitive parameters on a market for retail sale of cameras and accessories hereto contrary to the prohibition of anticompetitive agreements in section 6 of the Danish Competition Act and Article 101 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU). Consequently the DCC has ordered Team DS to stop the infringement and refrain from similar anti-competitive behavior in the future.

Team DS is a nationwide voluntary chain which is established by a number of independent camera distributors (the members of the Team DS), who are mutual competitors.

Team DS has used price coordination and exchange of information about prices and other competition parameters concerning the sale of cameras and accessories hereto, in order to limit the competition that would otherwise have taken place between the members of Team DS.

The behavior of Team DS can cause that cameras and accessories for this to become more expensive and thus increase the cost of purchasing these products to the detriment of consumers who ultimately will also hold this price increase when purchasing the products from their members.

On this background, the DCC considers that Team DS has coordinated, for at least 5 1/2 years from March 2008 to August 2013, prices for cameras and accessories hereto for the members of Team DS, and thereby infringing section 6 of the Danish Competition Act and TFEU Article 101.

The case arises from material found at a down raid with Team DS in September 2013 conducted by the Danish Competition and Consumer Authority (DCCA).

The information gathered documents that Team DS announced prices for members of Team DS, which are mutual competitors, during the period under consideration, and that the price reports are suitable for coordinating members conduct at their pricing in connection with retail sale of cameras and accessories hereto. The information gathered further documents that during the relevant period from Team DS, members of Team DS have exchanged information about its members prices and other competitive parameters that are suitable for coordinating members prices for cameras and accessories.

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