Italy fines Apple and Amazon for Beats headphones
The Italian competition regulator fined Amazon and Apple more than 200 million euros (168 million pounds) for allegedly infringing competition rules.
The fine is for Beats headphones, a brand that Apple bought for $ 3 billion (£ 1.8 billion at the time) in 2014.
A 2018 deal between the tech giants meant that only select retailers could sell products on Amazon’s Italian site.
Both Apple and Amazon have said they want to appeal the fines.
The Competition Authority said the two companies’ actions also violated EU rules and affected price competition.
It ordered the two companies to end the restrictions and to grant resellers access on a “non-discriminatory basis”.
“I haven’t done anything wrong”
Apple said it respected the watchdog’s decision, “but we believe we have done nothing wrong.”
Partnering with selected retailers helps customer safety by ensuring that products are genuine, Apple said.
“Non-genuine products offer an inferior experience and can often be dangerous,” the spokesperson said.
“To ensure that our customers buy genuine products, we work closely with our reseller partners and have dedicated teams of experts around the world who work with law enforcement, customs and merchants, to ensure they are only sold. original Apple products “.
Amazon said it strongly disagrees with the Italian authority’s decision and that its share of the proposed fine (€ 68.7 million) is “disproportionate and unjustified”.
A company spokesperson said, “We reject the suggestion that Amazon benefits from excluding sellers from our store, as our business model is built on their success.
The agreement in question stated that it “more than doubled” the catalog of products available to Italian customers, and led to “better deals and faster shipments”.
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