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The Competition Commission Expands Price Investigation in Consumer Electronics to Retailers

The Competition Commission Expands Price Investigation in Consumer Electronics to Retailers

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Back in September 2020, the Serbian Commission for Protection of Competition (the “Commission”), following an internal review of the market dynamics and dawn raids at key players, initiated a formal investigation against three major undertakings active in both wholesale and retail of consumer electronics – Roaming Electronics d.o.o., Tehnomanija d.o.o. and Comtrade Distribution d.o.o. The Commission had, per publicly available pricing information and upon review of comparative practice, cited concerns that the undertakings involved were acting in concert, as well by potentially enforcing a resale price maintenance policy.

The initial proceedings were triggered by Eurostat data for 2019, noting that the prices of consumer electronics in the Republic of Serbia were by 13 percent higher than the EU average. Following a further analysis of the wholesale and retail market for consumer electronics in the Republic of Serbia, the Commission found that reference products offered in retail outlets and online sales of the retailers may have been sold at very similar prices.

Now, the competition watchdog found there to be reasonable grounds to extend the investigation to retailers Gigatron eksport-import, Tehnomedia centar d.o.o., Emmezeta Srbija d.o.o., XLS d.o.o., and Tehnomanija d.o.o., as the major resellers active on the relevant market, in order to investigate whether these undertakings would have accepted a resale price maintenance policy by agreeing on their prices with the aforementioned importers and distributors.

Further information is still gathered with regards to the initiated proceedings.

The information in this document does not constitute legal advice on any particular matter and is provided for general informational purposes only.

By Bojan Vuckovic, Partner, and Veljko Smiljanic, Senior Associate, independent attorneys at law in cooperation with Karanovic & Partners

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