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Amazon offers concessions to EU in antitrust concerns probe

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Amazon, in search of to resolve two European Union antitrust investigations, has promised to treat third-party merchants on its website fairly, the bloc’s competition watchdog said Thursday.

The web retail giant offered to make quite a few commitments to ease competition concerns, and the European Commission, the 27-nation bloc’s top antitrust enforcer, said it can now seek feedback on them from “interested parties.”

The commission launched an investigation 4 years ago over concerns Amazon breached EU competition rules by using data from merchants selling products on its platform to achieve an unfair advantage over them.

It also opened a separate investigation into whether Amazon favors its own retail business and merchants that use its logistics and delivery system over other sellers.

The investigations are a part of the bloc’s wider efforts to curb the facility of massive technology corporations.

Amazon said that while it disagreed with several of the conclusions, it has “engaged constructively with the commission to deal with their concerns and preserve our ability to serve European customers and the greater than 185,000 European small- and medium-sized businesses selling through our stores.”

European Commissioner for Competition Margrethe Vestager launched an investigation 4 years ago over concerns Amazon breached EU competition rules.AP

The corporate also said it has “serious concerns” about latest EU digital regulations, often known as the Digital Markets Act, that it said are “unfairly targeting Amazon and a number of other US corporations.” The act, a part of the EU’s overhaul of its digital rulebook, goals to rein in the facility of tech giants and make them treat smaller rivals fairly under threat of hefty fines.

Under the commission’s investigation, Amazon had faced a possible fantastic of as much as 10% of its annual worldwide revenue, which could have amounted to billions of dollars.

Britain’s competition watchdog opened the same probe into Amazon last week, looking into concerns that the web retailer is abusing its dominance to undermine rivals.

The EU commission suspected Amazon of distorting competition by accessing and analyzing real-time data from independent vendors selling goods on its platform to assist resolve which latest products of its own to launch and methods to price and market them.

Amazon signUnder the commission’s investigation, Amazon had faced a possible fantastic of as much as 10% of its annual worldwide revenue, which could have amounted to billions of dollars.AFP via Getty Images

To deal with the issue, Amazon has promised to refrain from using “non-public data” from the vendors’ activities to compete with them through its own sales of branded goods or “private label” products.

To settle the second investigation, Amazon also committed to allowing sellers on its Prime membership service to make use of any logistics and delivery company of their selecting and to set “non-discriminatory” criteria for who gets chosen to sell on Prime.

The corporate also promised to provide equal treatment to all sellers when rating their product offers for the location’s “buy box,” which lets shoppers add items on to their shopping baskets. The box encompasses a single seller’s product though multiple merchants might offer the item, so Amazon is also promising to indicate a second, competing offer to provide consumers more selection.

If accepted, Amazon’s commitments would remain in force for five years. The commission is receiving feedback on the proposals until Sept. 9.

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