French Competition Authority Issues 125 M Euro Penalty: EssilorLuxottica Challenges
In a brief public news release, EssilorLuxottica acknowledges that the French Competition Authority (FCA) issued a decision against several eyewear industry players, including Luxottica Group July 22nd. The company adamantly disagrees with the ruling.
What the Ruling says.
The FCA, which is the equivalent of the Competition Bureau for France, is imposing a a Euro 125 million penalty to Luxottica allegedly for the group’s conduct in France, which took place between 2005 and 2014 in the optical frames and sunglasses sectors.
The French consumer watchdog notably found that Luxottica, along with LVMH and Logo limited retailers’ freedom to set final selling prices for fashion glasses with brands such as Chanel, Ray Ban, Prada and Bulgari.
According to the FCA findings, Luxottica punished retailers which didn’t comply with its pricing policy with retaliatory measures including stopping deliveries.
The FCA ruling also established that, in their distribution contracts with retailers, Luxottica, LVMH and Chanel explicitly forbid online sales of glasses by fashion brands Prada, Dolce & Gabbana and Bulgari.
Today’s decision marks the end to the investigation which was initiated in 2005.
In their statement (see below), EssilorLuxottica states the firmly believe it has always conducted business according to the highest standard of compliance, always supporting customers, partners as well as the entire market.
As such, the Company strongly disagrees with the FCA’s decision and considers the sanction, “highly disproportionate and groundless”.
The Company will appeal the decision, and expressed confidence that it will successfully demonstrate that the decision is wrong both from a factual and a legal perspective.
All Charges Against SAFILO dismissed.
In reference to the same FCA ruling regarding a number of alleged practices in the eyewear sector in France, Safilo announced its pleasure with the decision issued today, saying that all the charges which had been raised against the company have been dismissed after a vigorous challenge by the company and their external legal team.