A Spanish antitrust regulator slapped Apple and Amazon with a total of $218 million in fines, the Associated Press (AP) reported Monday.
The fines stem from an allegation the companies conspired to favor direct sales of Apple products on Amazon after a 2018 agreement, according to AP. Spain’s antitrust regulator, CNMC, argued the companies “restricted without justification the number of sellers of Apple products on the Amazon website in Spain,” Reuters reported.
The alleged collusion caused a price increase in Apple products sold online, the outlet reported, citing CNMC. The antitrust regulator further alleged 90% of third parties selling Apple products ahead of the 2018 agreement had been kicked off Amazon, according to AP.
Apple was reportedly fined $161 million and Amazon took a $56.7 million hit. Both companies plan to appeal, according to AP.
🇪🇸 Spain’s anti-trust watchdog announced on Tuesday that it has fined Amazon and Apple a total of €194 million for collusion in the sale of products which “restricted competition”, according to a statement by the regulator. https://t.co/PHlbE43VKn
— Euronews Next (@euronewsnext) July 18, 2023
“We reject the suggestion made by CNMC that Amazon benefits from excluding sellers from its market place, as our business model hinges precisely on the success of the companies selling through Amazon,” an Amazon spokesperson told Reuters via email. (RELATED: Regulator Fines Tech Giant Millions For Showing Targeted Ads Based On User Activity)
“We stand behind our efforts to protect consumers,” Apple told AP, arguing the 2018 agreement helped address counterfeiting.