Amazon and Apple pay $225 million in Italian antitrust fines

The watchdog said the contractual provisions of a 2018 agreement between the companies meant only selected resellers were allowed to sell Apple and Beats products on Amazon.it, saying it violates EU rules and affects competition on prices.

Italy’s antitrust authority has charged US tech giants Amazon.com and Apple Inc., a total fine of more than 200 million euros ($225 million) for alleged anti-competitive cooperation in the sale of Apple and Beats products. 

The watchdog said the contractual provisions of a 2018 agreement between the companies meant only selected resellers were allowed to sell Apple and Beats products on Amazon., saying it violates EU rules and affects competition on prices.

Apple and Amazon both said they plan to appeal against the fine. 

The authority fined Amazon €68.7 million and Apple €134.5 million, ordering the companies to end the ban for providing access to Amazon.it in a non-discriminatory manner to retailers of genuine Apple and Beats products.

To ensure that our customers buy genuine products, we work closely with our reseller partners and have a dedicated team of experts from around the world who work with law enforcement, customs and merchants to ensure That only genuine Apple products are being sold,” Apple denies any wrongdoing. 

In a separate statement, Amazon said it strongly disagrees with the Italian authority’s decision and that the proposed fines were “inconsistent and unreasonable.” 

“We reject the suggestion that Amazon benefits from excluding sellers from our stores because our business model depends on their success. As a result of the agreement, Italian customers can find the latest Apple and Beats products at our stores, benefitting more than doubling our catalogue with better deals and faster shipping,” said Amazon.