EU: Guess fined €40M for geo-blocking
EU: Guess fined €40M for geo-blocking

European Commission (EC) has fined the clothing company Guess €39.8 mn (US$45.2 mn) for restricting retailers from online advertising and selling cross-border to consumers in other Member States (geo-blocking), in breach of EU competition rules.

The Guess’ distribution agreements tried to prevent EU consumers from shopping in other Member States by blocking retailers from advertising and selling cross-border. This allowed it to maintain artificially high retail prices, in Central and Eastern European countries.

The investigation began in June 2017 following a year-long inquiry into cross-border online sales practices of 1,900 cos.

EC granted Guess a 50% fine reduction for its cooperation with EC beyond its legal obligation by revealing prohibition to use its brand names and trademarks for online search advertising.

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