Competition law risk management guide—dominant companies
Produced in partnership with Andrij Jurkiw of Womble Bond Dickinson
Competition law risk management guide—dominant companies

The following Risk & Compliance practice note produced in partnership with Andrij Jurkiw of Womble Bond Dickinson provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Competition law risk management guide—dominant companies
  • Why you need to manage this risk
  • Top five priorities
  • 1. Understanding your special responsibility
  • Understanding your special responsibility—mini-action list
  • 2. Exclusive agreements
  • Exclusive agreements—mini-action list
  • 3. Tying and bundling
  • Rationale
  • Effect
  • More...

Why you need to manage this risk

Article 102 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (and the UK national equivalent, Chapter II of the Competition Act 1998), prohibits conduct on the part of an undertaking that amounts to an abuse of a dominant position.

Dominant businesses, ie businesses with a high degree of market power or economic strength, have a special responsibility. This means behaviour which was perfectly acceptable while that business did not have market power, suddenly becomes problematic once the business does have the requisite degree of market power.

As a rough rule of thumb, once a business consistently has a market share in excess of 40%, it is likely to be in a dominant position. That market share typically needs to have been maintained for at least two years. However, market share is not the only factor in determining whether a business is dominant—it will be dominant if it can act, to an appreciable extent, independently of its competitors, customers and consumers in the relevant market. See further, Practice Note: Dominant position and competition law.

Failure to comply with competition law requirements can have various consequences:

FinesThe European Commission’s and Competition and Markets Authority's (CMA) principal tool for punishing anti-competitive activity is the imposition of fines on infringing companies. Each separate infringement of competition law
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