Spain takes a swing at big tech
Apple and Amazon have been fined €194.1 million ($218 million) by Spain's antitrust watchdog for colluding to limit the online sale of devices from Apple and competitors in Spain.
The investigation into alleged price-fixing took two years to complete and follows similar ones in Germany and Italy.
The fine is the latest in a series of antitrust cases against Apple, which has been accused of anti-competitive behavior in several countries.
Spain loves fair competition
Spain has a long history of protecting fair competition in the marketplace. The country's antitrust watchdog, the CNMC, has a mandate to ensure that businesses do not engage in anti-competitive practices that harm consumers. In recent years, the CNMC has been particularly active in taking on tech giants like Amazon and Apple.
In 2019, CNMC fined Amazon €260 million for abusing its dominant position in the online retail market. The watchdog found that Amazon had been using its market power to force suppliers to offer lower prices on its platform, which had the effect of driving out competition.
The CNMC's latest fine against Amazon and Apple is a further sign of the watchdog's commitment to fair competition.
The fine sends a clear message to these companies that they will not be allowed to engage in anti-competitive practices in Spain as just a few days have passed since FTC sued Amazon over Prime's dark patterns.
Will Amazon and Apple really be impacted by this fine?
It is unlikely that the fine will have a significant impact on Amazon or Apple.
Both companies are incredibly profitable, and the fine represents a relatively small percentage of their overall revenue.
However, the fine is still a significant victory for the CNMC.
It shows that the watchdog is willing to take on even the biggest tech giants, and it sends a message to other companies that they should not engage in anti-competitive behavior in Spain.Advertisement