FAS Russia initiated proceedings on price fixing for iPhones
The case on Part 5 Article 11 of the Law “On Protection of Competition” has been brought in relation to the group including LLC “Apple Rus”, Apple Holding B.V., Apple Sales Ireland, Apple Operations International, Apple Inc.
The antimonopoly authority observes signs of price-setting coordination on the territory of the Russian Federation among the resellers of iPhone, which became a reason for fixing of the same retail prices for the smartphones.
As the ground for conducting an antimonopoly investigation served a citizen’s application containing the information on setting of the same prices for the Apple’s iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus, which appeared on the Russian market in October 2015, by the 16 main retailers: MTS, M.Video, Beeline, Eldorado, Evroset’, OZON, Re:Store, Svyaznoy, Megafon, Yulmart, Media Markt, Citylink, Kholodilnik.ru, DNS, ION (Know-How), Tekhnosila.
As the preliminary investigations showed, since the start of the sales of iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus the majority of resellers have fixed and maintained for a certain period of time the same prices for them. Besides, the antimonopoly authority has identified similarities in the resellers’ prices for other Apple’s smartphones.
The FAS Russia suggests that such a coincidence might be a result of the Russian resellers’ price-setting coordination by the group Apple, which has led to fixing prices in the Russian market and setting the so-called “recommended” prices as obligatory.