News • 17.10.2018

Mundt: „We are going to deal with the topic of e-commerce in a more targeted way“

2017 Annual Report of the Bundeskartellamt

shadow of a giant over a tiny figure; copyright: panthermedia.net / lightsource...
Source: panthermedia.net / lightsource

Andreas Mundt: “Our key focus is on protecting competition in the digital economy. We have two key objectives when it comes to the major internet companies. Our task is to keep markets open to ensure they remain contestable and companies continue to have the opportunity to be successful with new ideas. We also need to make sure consumers can select the products and services matching their requirements in a transparent and fair environment.

Digital economy

The growing importance of large internet platforms raises new and different antitrust and economic issues. The Bundeskartellamt has reacted quickly and dedicated more resources to tackle these issues. During the last few years it has already concluded a large number of "internet cases".

Andreas Mundt: “We are currently conducting proceedings against Facebook, and sector inquiries on online advertising, comparison portals and smart TVs. A joint project on algorithms with the French competition authority is ongoing. We are also going to deal with the topic of e-commerce in a more targeted way. The Bundeskartellamt covers key competition issues from the digital economy with its procedures and investigations. Simultaneously, the European Commission has undertaken significant activities in the digital area, for example its proceedings against Google. Our overall range of activities is, therefore, exceptionally wide. The competition authorities in Europe are carrying out the groundwork for setting guidelines for the digital economy.”

Already in the summer of 2017, the legislator supplemented the German Competition Act, the Act against Restraints of Competition, by providing important rules for the digital economy. Initiated by impulses formulated in the coalition contract, discussions to update the competition law further are ongoing, in particular with regard to the control of abuse of dominant positions. The aim is to provide for quicker and more targeted opportunities to examine the business practices of major internet companies.

Graphic of Cartel proceedings concluded at the Bundeskartellamt from 2008 to...
Amount of cartel proceedings concluded at the Bundeskartellamt from 2008 to 2017 per year
Source: Bundeskartellamt

Consumer protection in the digital economy

Also in the summer of 2017, the legislator granted the Bundeskartellamt initial competences in the area of consumer protection. Whenever there is sound reason to suspect significant violations of consumer rights, e.g. under the Act Against Unfair Competition (Gesetz gegen den unlauteren Wettbewerb, UWG) or legal requirements for general terms and conditions, the Bundeskartellamt is entitled to conduct sector inquiries. A newly created division has since initiated surveys on the transparency and fairness of comparison portals and on handling user data in smart TVs.

Andreas Mundt: “Strengthening the authority's capacities in the area of consumer protection, especially as far as the internet is concerned, could be a significant contribution to quicker remedies for negative developments in the digital economy. The coalition contract includes a wide array of projects in the area of consumer protection in the digital economy: Transparency with regard to algorithms, artificial intelligence, dynamic pricing, and rankings and interdependencies in comparison portals, to name but a few."

Cartel prosecution

In 2017, the Bundeskartellamt imposed fines amounting to approx. 66 million euros. It concluded its investigations against manufacturers of industrial batteries, harbour towage service providers and automotive part manufacturers. The authority has received 37 so-called applications for leniency and numerous indications of possible infringements of competition law. It carried out eleven dawn raids at a total of 60 companies.

In the current year 2018, several cartel proceedings were closed and new proceedings were initiated. To this day, the Bundeskartellamt has carried out seven dawn raids at 21 companies and four private residences. Fines amounting to approx. 273 million euros, among them initial fines in the proceedings against stainless steel manufacturers and technical building services, have been imposed on 17 companies and 14 private individuals."

Source: Bundeskartellamt

related articles:

popular articles:

Thumbnail-Photo: Frictionless checkout across all channels to build loyalty...
04.07.2019   #mobile payment #customer satisfaction

Frictionless checkout across all channels to build loyalty

H&M and Klarna elevate the shopping experience for US consumers

H&M and Klarna announced that they have expanded their current partnership agreement to also include the US market, in the development of an unrivalled payments and shopping experience across touchpoints. Together, H&M and Klarna are aiming ...

Thumbnail-Photo: 45th anniversary of the barcode in retail
01.07.2019   #barcode scanner #qr code

45th anniversary of the barcode in retail

GS1 US celebrates the barcode’s relevance as the backbone of commerce

GS1 US®, the information standards organization best known as the administrator of UPC barcodes, this week celebrates 45 years since the debut and first scan of the iconic barcode. On June 26, 1974, a pack of Wrigley's chewing gum carrying a ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Digital Signage Summit (DSS) Europe
07.05.2019   #digital signage #digitization

Digital Signage Summit (DSS) Europe

iXtenso readers receive a 30% ticket-discount!

The two-day event comprises a comprehensive mix of twin-track conference programme; hands-on workshops; exclusive presentations; numerous networking opportunities and a vendor and service supplier exhibition area.In 2019, DSS Europe returns to the ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Why digital signage pays off big!
03.06.2019   #digital signage #customer relationship management

Why digital signage pays off big!

The right content can increase sales and customer loyalty

The strategic use of digital signage can unquestionably lead to increased sales, a boosted impact of the sales floor, a new shopping experience, and a stronger brand image. However, emphasis is too often placed merely on technical innovations that ...

Thumbnail-Photo: New innovative hybrid POS solution for small businesses...
20.05.2019   #pos systems #cashpoints

New innovative hybrid POS solution for small businesses

Posiflex presents a new innovative Hybrid POS solution for small businesses

The Retail market is always evolving, and so is Posiflex. Posiflex continually stays attached to the market and identifies ahead what the market really needs. Posiflex is honored to present its latest innovative Hybrid POS solution, WT-3007A, to the ...

Thumbnail-Photo: U.S. merchants lack critical tools to fuel global expansion...
10.07.2019   #online trading #e-commerce

U.S. merchants lack critical tools to fuel global expansion

Top challenges: payment localization, compliance, and cybersecurity

Rapyd, a FinTech-as-a-Service provider, today announced the results of its inaugural ‘2019 State of Cross-Border eCommerce: U.S. Merchant Outlook’, which found that most U.S. business units (91 percent) prioritize cross-border sales as a ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Improving performance with video training
19.06.2019   #personnel management #video

Improving performance with video training

Video tutorials for inventory management or customer service excellence

Smart Retail Solutions (SRS) has announced their ProfitTrax Platform is now including Best Practice Video Training in its Advanced Analytics Suite. Their team has successfully implemented the update because they believe the key to profit improvement ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Quality and great experiences at irma in Illum...
18.04.2019   #electronic shelf labels (ESL) #labels

Quality and great experiences at irma in Illum

A store with all the best

The customers wanted Irma back and they got that. After two years of absence, Irma has once again opened a store in the basement of ILLUM department store in the late summer of 2018. The new Irma store offers high quality and extra good experiences ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Changing markets: embracing disruption to harvest opportunity...
18.06.2019   #digitization #event

Changing markets: embracing disruption to harvest opportunity

Reporting from the first annual Retail & Brand Experience World Congress in Barcelona

More than 200 industry insiders highlighted the many challenges facing the retail sector today in interesting talks and lectures.Topics included the customer experience, the use of technologies, digital media, omnichannel strategies, personalization ...

Thumbnail-Photo: Tackling organized retail crime with video analytics...
26.06.2019   #video surveillance #digital video surveillance

Tackling organized retail crime with video analytics

Inpixon joins forces with National Anti-Organized Retail Crime Association

Inpixon, an indoor positioning and data analytics company, announced it is collaborating with the National Anti-Organized Retail Crime Association (NAORCA Worldwide) to combat retail crime by providing a free 90-day trial offer for IPA Video™ ...

Supplier

Delfi Technologies GmbH
Delfi Technologies GmbH
Landgraben 75
24232 Schönkirchen
APG Cash Drawer
APG Cash Drawer
4 The Drove
BN9 0LA Newhaven
LANCOM Systems GmbH
LANCOM Systems GmbH
Adenauerstraße 20 / B2
52146 Würselen
ROQQIO Commerce Solutions GmbH
ROQQIO Commerce Solutions GmbH
Harburger Schloßstraße 28
21079 Hamburg