Amazon could face a fine of up to 10% of annual sales.
Brussels is moving forward in its antitrust investigation on Amazon. The ecommerce giant will face a formal complaint from the European Commission on Tuesday for anti-competitive practices, according to the Financial Times . The case points to the use of data that Jeff Bezos’ company collects from the sales of merchants in its marketplace to better position its own products on the platform. Thus, the survey seeks to clarify the legality of Amazon’s role in its dual role: as a retailer and as a host of other online stores.
The lawsuit this Tuesday, presented by the European Commissioner for Competition, Margrethe Vestager, is the result of an investigation that began almost two years ago to assess whether Amazon is abusing the information of other sellers to compete with them. The alarms go off especially when one of the best quarters for Amazon is around the corner , with dates like Black Friday and the Christmas holidays.
The Seattle company, which closed the third quarter with revenue of $ 96.1 billion, is already in the eye of antitrust in Europe and the United States. Amazon has been included since last year in an investigation of the United States Congress, along with Google, Facebook, Apple to find out if conglomerates carry out anti-competitive behavior, when using information about their advertisers, their products and their transactions for their own commercial strategy.
The battle against these big techs is also on Vestager’s record . The Danish, who is serving her second term as competition commissioner, has already led other complaints against Amazon. In 2017, the commissioner forced the company to return 250 million euros to Luxembourg in unpaid taxes for having benefited from a favorable tax system.
Furthermore, under his tenure, the European Union has fined Google more than 8 billion euros in three separate antitrust cases, while Apple has been ordered to pay 13 billion euros in back taxes to the Irish government.