The European Commission is indicting the tech giant Amazon for unfair competition. Amazon itself offers the cheapest prices for popular products offered by other sellers on its platform.
Margrethe Vestager, the European Commissioner for Competition, takes the American online store by Amazon. She sends the tech company a letter of grievance, which amounts to a formal indictment. The commission states that Amazon is misusing the data of the companies that sell on its platform.
Vestager is also announcing a new investigation against favoring proprietary services through Amazon’s logistics and delivery services.
Amazon can avoid risks by using data from others and focusing on the most popular products.
The committee began an investigation into Amazon’s unfair competition in July last year. She investigated whether the dual role of the tech giant – web store and digital shopping platform – leads to distortions of competition. Vestager now judges that this is indeed the case. Amazon gets one last chance to defend itself or to deal with the distortion of competition.
The EU investigation shows that Amazon uses the sales data of companies active on the shopping platform. This allows Amazon to sell those products more cheaply. ‘Companies that offer their services digitally take risks and invest heavily. Amazon can avoid risks by using data from others and focusing on the most popular products, ”says Vestager.
Fair and unadulterated online access to consumers is important for all sellers.
The tech giant’s web store thus acquires the lion’s share of sales. Amazon has a dominant position of 70 and 80 percent respectively in the two main digital markets in Europe, France and Germany.
The Commission is also investigating Amazon’s use of logistics services and delivery through the buy box, the shopping cart on the platform. The Commission suspects that Amazon favors its own online store here too. “The rules on the Amazon platform should not artificially favor its own store offerings, nor those of other sellers who use Amazon’s logistics and delivery services,” says Vestager.
Vestager emphasizes that the size and success of Amazon are not an issue, but the way in which the store operates on its own shopping platform. “With the boom of e-commerce and Amazon as the leading platform for e-commerce, fair and unadulterated online access to consumers is important for all sellers.”