Media reports say Intel has won “an historic victory” in the battle in European Union courts against a record antitrust fine of €1.06 billion. A court declared the sentence, which had already been imposed in 2009, null and void. US company Intel and the EU have been arguing over antitrust fines for years.
The competition watchdogs in Brussels considered it proven that Intel had exploited its dominant position to push competitor AMD out of the market. There have been official investigations since 2007 and a first verdict in 2008. In 2009, the EU imposed a record fine of €1.06 billion on Intel.
penalty was worth it
That was the highest antitrust fine in EU history at the time. The fine was equivalent to about four percent of the company’s 2008 revenue of $37.6 billion. Intel’s legal team appealed and battled the fine ever since — and now, in 2022, they’ve succeeded (via Bloomberg).
Intel and the computer manufacturers contract
Between 2002 and 2005, Intel granted its partners discounts if they bought at least 95 percent of Intel’s PC chips. The EU’s Supreme Court has now ruled that EU regulators made critical mistakes when they fined Intel. The judges said the European Commission presented an “incomplete” analysis in fining the chip giant.
The decision taken at the time “does not make it possible to demonstrate to the required legal standard that the discounts concerned may or may not have anti-competitive effects”. This is the result of the latest examination of the documents and statements available at the time in the competition between Intel and AMD.
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