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Danish Maritime and Commercial High Court: Pieces of information in decision from the Danish Competition Council are not exempt from publication

12. May 2020

On May 11 2020, The Danish Maritime and Commercial High Court decided that a series of information in an August 2018-decision from the Danish Competition Council on the subject of Teller’s (now Nets A/S) abuse of a dominant position are not exempt from publication. Thus, the Danish Maritime and Commercial High Court has ruled against Nets A/S that made a claim for exemption, i.a. on the identity of customers affected by the abuse of dominance and the illegal customer contract terms in question.

Pursuant to the Danish Competition Act, section 13(2), the Competition and Consumer Authority shall publish the decisions of the Danish Competition Council made under the Danish Competition Act. As an exception to the main rule, said publication shall not include information on technical matters, including information on research, production methods, product information and operating and business secrets, where such information is of substantial financial importance to the person or undertaking concerned, cf. Danish Competition Act section 13(4). Whether pieces of information are exempt from publication relies on a case-by-case assessment.

Nets A/S filed the case with the Danish Maritime and Commercial High Court following a ruling from the Danish Competition Appeals Tribunal in March 2019. The ruling from the Danish Competition Appeals Tribunal essentially upheld a decision from the Danish Competition Authority that the information in question could not be exempted from publication. The case concerns the following categories of information:

  • The identity and number of companies affected by the conduct of Teller.
  • The range of products of Teller.
  • Prices and rebates of Teller.
  • Teller customer contracts in extract
  • The market position of Nets/Teller
  • The sum of purchase and transactions of the companies affected by the conduct of Teller.
  • The cost of Teller.
  • Additional pieces of information, i.a. customer letter.