Latest Updates on Antitrust – September, 2021 – Part III
This is a rundown of last week’s news updates on Antitrust:
BASF obtains favourable verdict for patent-licensing antitrust claims
Chemical company BASF Corp has succeeded in their claims against rival chemical company Ingevity Corp for antitrust claims of tying a license to a patent to an obligation to buy the consequent product. The jury in this case had reached an award of $28 million, however, based on a provision of US federal antitrust law, the award is to be tripled to nearly $85 million. The issue arose out of Ingevity suing for patent infringement of their “honeycomb scrubbers” for reducing auto emissions, which led to BASF countersuing for patent invalidity.
CCI finds Google abused its dominant position through its Android operating system
The Competition Commission of India (CCI), the country’s antitrust regulator, has reached a finding that tech giant Google had abused its dominance over its Android operating system with the use of financial factors to strong arm competitors. The CCI found that Google had limited the “ability and incentive of device manufacturers to develop and sell devices operating on alternative versions of Android”. However, it is said that senior CCI members will scrutinise the report, affording an extra opportunity to Google to counter the allegations, and thereafter choose to include penalties or not.
Minnesota court denies motion to dismiss in beef packers antitrust class action lawsuit
The Federal District Court of Minnesota has dismissed a motion by four large beef packer companies to dismiss a class action antitrust lawsuit, finding that the plaintiffs had plausibly pled that the defendants had supressed fed cattle prices and increased the price of beef. The plaint alleges a violation of the Sherman Act by way of a price fixing conspiracy, as well as other specific Acts. The case will now proceed to discovery for the plaintiffs to establish their claims.
Authored by Rohan Joshua Jacob (Associate).
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