The Market Court recently imposed fines in the amount of EUR 15,000 on Lastentarvike Oy for including certain sales restrictions in its agreements with independent distributors concerning the distribution of prams. The matter in the Market Court concerned the alleged restriction by Lastentarvike Oy of both active and passive sales by the authorised resellers belonging to the selective distribution network of Lastentarvike Oy. According to the agreements, the resellers were prohibited from actively marketing prams to end users outside of their relevant territories. The resellers were also subject to restrictions regarding the marketing and selling of prams over the Internet, in other electronic media and in certain advertising magazines. The Market Court found that the distribution agreements included prohibited restrictions on both active and passive sales to end users. However, as regards passive sales, only the restriction on marketing and selling over the Internet and in other electronic media was considered prohibited.
Since the restrictions in question are hard-core restrictions considered to have as their object the restriction of competition, the Market Court disregarded Lastentarvike Oy’s defense that the restrictions had not been implemented in practice. In determining the fines, the Market Court took account of the fact that the restrictions did not concern or affect the operations of Lastentarvike Oy’s most important resellers. Consequently, the Market Court heavily reduced the fines of EUR 100,000 proposed by the Finnish Competition Authority to EUR 15,000.
For further information, please contact *#Ms. Lotta Pohjanpalo#*.