The company is accused of unfair competition with vendors on its platform in Germany and France.
European Commissioner Margaret Westager announced today that the European Union is accusing Amazon of misusing the data it collects from external vendors on its platform. The European Commission says Amazon is « systematically » using non-public seller data in the marketplace to unfairly compete with sellers in France and Germany. The accusations are the result of an investigation announced last year that looked at how Amazon used sales data to compete with the platform’s independent merchants.
The agency’s initial view, explained in the Objections Statement, is that using non-public market vendor data allows Amazon to avoid the normal risks of retail competition and leverage its market dominance to provide market services in France and Germany – the largest Amazon market in the European Union.
The committee believes that « very large amounts of non-public seller data » are being used to assist the retail business at Amazon « at the expense of other market sellers ». « Amazon will have an opportunity to respond to these allegations in the coming weeks. » Reuters reported that Amazon does not agree to the accusation. European Union
We came to the initial conclusion that amazon illegally misused its dominant position as a marketplace service provider in DE & FR. Amazon may have used sensitive data on a large scale to compete with small retailers now on Amazon to respond to EU_Competition
The committee also announced today that it is opening a second antitrust investigation in the company to consider whether it is granting preferential treatment to its retailers and market sellers who use its logistics and delivery services in particular. This investigation will examine how Amazon determines which merchant will be linked using Buy Box
“Data on third-party vendor activity should not be used for the benefit of Amazon when it acts as a competitor to these sellers,” Margrethe Vestager said in a statement that the terms of competition on the Amazon platform should also be fair. Its rules should not artificially favor or benefit from Amazon’s retail offerings. Offers from retailers who use Amazon logistics and delivery services.
The Amazon Marketplace platform, which now accounts for more than half of physical merchandise sales, has been attracting scrutiny for years. Most notably, federal lawmakers earlier this year questioned Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos about its treatment of outside sellers The session came after a report from The Wall Street Journal. Journal alleges that Amazon is using data from independent vendors on its platform to develop and launch competing products
In response to the Wall Street Journal investigation, Amazon said that while it uses « sales and store data to provide our customers with the best possible experience, » it forbids its employees from using « non-public vendor data to identify private label products for launch » however, in an anti-launch hearing. Monopoly in the US In July, Bezos said he could not guarantee that this policy would never be violated
In August, there were early signs that the US investigation was entering a new phase after reports surfaced that the attorneys general in New York and California, as well as the Federal Trade Commission, were planning to investigate the Amazon platform.
Individual European countries also conducted their own investigations Last year, on the same day the European Union announced its investigation, Amazon agreed to change terms of service for third-party merchants in response to an investigation by German regulators in particular, the company agreed to give sellers notice For 30 days and a reason before removing them from its platform
A EU press release stating that there is no legal deadline for when the antitrust investigation will end. However, if found guilty, the Wall Street Journal notes that Amazon could be fined up to 10 percent of its annual global revenue. This translates into About $ 28 billion when you look at its 2019 earnings.
European Union, Amazon.com, Competition Law, Margrethe Vestager, European Commission
World News – US – Amazon accused of violating the European Union’s antitrust over market data
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