Short Reads

District Court of Rotterdam dismisses Vodafone claims of abuse of dominance by KPN

District Court of Rotterdam dismisses Vodafone claims of abuse of dom

District Court of Rotterdam dismisses Vodafone claims of abuse of dominance by KPN

02.10.2017 NL law

On 27 September 2017, the District Court of Rotterdam dismissed claims by Vodafone that KPN abused its dominant position on the market for Virtual Internet Service Provider (VISP) services. In essence, the Court found that KPN did not have a dominant position on this hypothetical market because several companies had developed alternatives to KPN's services.

In 2007, KPN (through its subsidiary Tiscali) started to provide VISP services to Vodafone. These services allowed Vodafone to develop and offer retail internet, television and telephone ("Triple Play") services. In 2009, KPN announced its intention to terminate the VISP services agreement. After Vodafone objected to the termination, the two companies concluded a new agreement in 2011.

According to Vodafone, KPN abused its dominant position by terminating the original agreement and subsequently failing to comply with its obligations under the new VISP services agreement. This resulted in the delay of Vodafone's planned launch of television services through KPN's copper network until the end of 2014. According to Vodafone, this allowed KPN to continue to strengthen its own position on the retail market without having to face competition from Vodafone.

The District Court concluded that KPN did not have a dominant position on the hypothetical market for VISP services. In that regard it considered that KPN was unable to act independently of its competitors, because companies such as Tele2, BBned and Online were capable of developing their own television platforms, either using services provided by competitors of KPN such as Samsung, or by developing such a platform themselves. Vodafone had also argued that KPN's services were the only suitable option available. However, the Court considered that KPN's attractiveness as a service provider in this case was the result of Vodafone's own strategic choices and not because there was a lack of alternatives.

This article was published in the Competition Law Newsletter of October 2017. Other articles in this newsletter:

  1. Court of Justice landmark judgment: Intel's EUR 1.06 billion fine is sent back to the General Court
  2. Court of Justice upholds fine imposed on Philips and LG in the cathode ray tubes cartel
  3. Court of Justice clarifies that a change from sole to joint control requires EU clearance only if the joint venture is "full-function"
  4. Court of Justice provides guidance on examining excessive prices as abuse of a dominant position
  5. Curaçao Competition Act entered into force on 1 September 2017

Team

Related news

02.04.2020 NL law
ACM played high stakes and lost: no more fixed network access regulation

Short Reads - The ACM’s failure to meet the requisite standard of proof has led to the fixed networks of Dutch telecom providers KPN and VodafoneZiggo being free from access regulation. The Dutch Trade and Industry Appeals Tribunal ruled that the ACM had failed to demonstrate the existence of collective dominance, and that KPN and VodafoneZiggo would tacitly coordinate their behaviour absent regulation.

Read more

26.03.2020 BE law
​I am suffering significant financial losses as a result of the spread of the corona virus. Is there a possibility of State aid?

Short Reads - COVID-19 brings certain questions to centre stage regarding State aid. In this short read, Peter Wytinck, Sophie Van Besien and Michèle de Clerck discuss the possibility of State aid in case of significant financial losses as a result of the spread of the corona virus.

Read more

02.04.2020 NL law
Claims assigned to a litigation vehicle: who needs to prove what?

Short Reads - Two recent decisions from the Amsterdam Court of Appeal have confirmed that litigation vehicles cannot come empty-handed to the court, and should provide documentation regarding the assignments of claims they submit. The Dutch legal system allows companies and individuals to assign their claims to a “litigation vehicle” or “claims vehicle” that bundles those claims into a single action. In its decisions of 10 March 2020, the Court of Appeal ruled that it is up to litigation vehicles to prove that the assignments can be invoked against the debtor. 

Read more

10.03.2020 NL law
De AVG staat niet in de weg aan de verwerking van persoonsgegevens door een toezichthouder tijdens een bedrijfsbezoek

Short Reads - Bedrijven die met toezicht worden geconfronteerd, zijn gehouden op verzoek van een toezichthouder in beginsel alle informatie te verstrekken. Met de komst van de Algemene verordening gegevensbescherming (AVG) is in de praktijk de vraag opgekomen of een toezichthouder bevoegd is om persoonsgegevens die onderdeel uitmaken van de gevraagde informatie te verwerken.

Read more

02.04.2020 NL law
EU competition policy agenda: full to the brim

Short Reads - The European Commission’s competition policy agenda stretches to 2024 and contains plans for many new or revised rules and guidelines. Recent publications, such as the New Industrial Strategy for Europe, shed more light on the Commission’s initiatives and their possible impact on parties from both inside and outside the European Union (EU). These new initiatives include temporary state aid rules to address the effects of the Corona crisis, consultations on the Block Exemption Regulations, and new measures in respect of (primarily) third-country companies.

Read more

05.03.2020 NL law
CBb confirms: no cartel fine, still interest to appeal cartel decision

Short Reads - Companies can challenge a decision establishing that they committed a competition law violation, even if no fine was imposed on them. The CBb – the highest court for public enforcement of cartel cases – recently confirmed that the absence of a fine does not affect a company’s interest to appeal. Consequently, parent companies held liable for a subsidiary’s cartel infringement can still challenge a cartel decision, irrespective of whether fines were imposed on them separately.

Read more

This website uses cookies. Some of these cookies are essential for the technical functioning of our website and you cannot disable these cookies if you want to read our website. We also use functional cookies to ensure the website functions properly and analytical cookies to personalise content and to analyse our traffic. You can either accept or refuse these functional and analytical cookies.

Privacy – en cookieverklaring