Tuesday, December 5, 2023
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Amazon Reaches EU Antitrust Settlement & Ignores Fi

Key Highlights

  • As a part of the settlement of antitrust investigations in Europe, Amazon agreed to make major changes to its business. 
  • It would have resulted in a huge fine to Amazon. 

The European Commission announced that Amazon had a series of commitments to address allegations that it was using the seller’s data to its advantage.

The EU Commission issued a statement of objections to over its systematic use of non-public business data from independent sellers to benefit its own retail business in November 2020.

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Concerns Raised By EU Commission

The EU Commission has opened a second investigation on the criteria set by Amazon for choosing featured merchants in its “buy box” tool. Also, it checks on enabling sellers to provide products to users of its Prime membership program.

This week, the commission said that Amazon had assured that it would change some of its practices. One of them was to pause using non-public data on independent sellers for its retail business and also for selling branded goods as well as private label products.

Amazon also accepted to display a second buy box during the second offer. It allows Prime sellers to choose any carrier for the logistics or delivery services. The changes are applicable only to the European Economic Area.

Amazon is given time till June 2023 to implement the changes that will remain in place for five to seven years. Amazon set new rules for competing independent retailers, carriers, and European customers and will have several opportunities.

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Expected Penalty

Amazon could have paid a fine worth 10% of its global annual revenues if it had been found guilty. It would be a nearly $47 billion penalty. Though the fine is ignored now as per the deal, it may be applicable if it breaches the commitments or a periodic penalty of 5% per day of the daily turnover of non-compliance.

Amazon said in a statement that it was pleased that they have addressed the concerns of the European Commission and resolved them.

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