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Amazon fined $1.28 billion by Italy’s antitrust regulators

Packages relocation along a conveyor at an Amazon satisfaction center on Cyber Monday in Robbinsville, New Jersey, U.S., on Monday, Nov. 29, 2021.

Michael Nagle | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Amazon was fined 1.13 billion euros ($1.28 billion) on Thursday by Italian antitrust regulators for abusing its market supremacy.

The Autorità Garante della Concorrenza e del Mercato, or AGCM, stated that Amazon had actually hurt completing operators in the e-commerce logistics service.

It concluded that Amazon leveraged its dominant position to motivate sellers on Amazon.it to utilize its own logistics service — Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA).

This was done “to the detriment of the logistics services offered by competing operators, as well as to strengthen its own dominant position.”

AGCM stated it will enforce restorative actions that will undergo examine by a tracking trustee.

Amazon stated it “strongly disagrees” with the fine which it prepares to appeal. “The proposed fine and remedies are unjustified and disproportionate,” an Amazon representative informed CNBC.

Amazon stated over 50% of all yearly sales on its platform in Italy originated from little and medium-sized company, including that their success is crucial to Amazon’s company design.

“Small and medium-sized businesses have multiple channels to sell their products both online and offline: Amazon is just one of those options,” the Amazon representative stated.

“We constantly invest to support the growth of the 18,000 Italian SMBs that sell on Amazon, and we provide multiple tools to our sellers, including those who manage shipments themselves.”

Ruhell Amin, worldwide head of retail equity research study at William O’Neil + Co, informed CNBC’s “Street Signs Europe” on Thursday that it’s a “significant” fine for the e-commerce giant.

“It’s part of a broader trend that we’ve seen in Europe around trying to regulate some of these Big Tech companies,” he stated.

The issue for financiers is that the Italian fine might represent a wider pattern towards controling Amazon more greatly in other parts of its company too, and in other parts of the world, Amin stated. “This certainly seems like the tip of the iceberg,” he stated.

“This case is interesting because the European Commission opened its own probe into this practice but carved Italy out of the scope of the investigation to allow Italy’s antitrust watchdog to proceed on its own merit,” Amin included. “Typically the European Commission is quite unified in its approach.”

Elsewhere, regulators in China are punishing e-commerce giant Alibaba while Latin American regulators are targeting Mercado Libre.

Blake

News and digital media editor, writer, and communications specialist. Passionate about social justice, equity, and wellness. Covering the news, viewing it differently.

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