Intel Claims Flawed Evidence in $1.3 billion EU Antitrust Case

The fine was the result of an investigation based on allegations that Intel used unfair monopolistic powers against AMD. However, Intel is not rolling over and paying the fine just yet, stating that the EU's analysis is "defective" and relied on a "quality of evidence" that is "profoundly inadequate".

In May 2009, the EU slapped Intel with a record fine that was based on 4.15 percent of Intel's 2008 revenue. Even if the EU said that this was less than the "allowable maximum" of 10 percent, the fine was unprecedented and the EU did not miss an opportunity to provoke a challenging reaction from Intel. For example, EU Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes preempted previous discussions about a likely appeal by stating: "I'd like to draw your attention to Intel's latest advert calling them sponsors of tomorrow, now they are sponsors of the European taxpayer."

As the appeal process begins, Intel has filed a 84-page document against the 542-page decision provided by the EU. According to Reuters, Intel claims that the commission does not have enough evidence to rule on any wrongdoing on the side of Intel "and relied too much on subjective comments by the company's customers." However, the EU maintained that Intel is guilty Intel gave out unfair rebates to retail chains and PC makers that put its rivals at a disadvantage.

"These kind of rebates can only be intended to tie customers and put competitors in an unfavorable position," the Commission's lawyer argued.

A ruling could be expected within a few months, but Intel has another option available should it fail with the current appeal process: It can take its fight to the the EU Court of Justice.

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  • erunion
    Three prisoners were sitting in a jail, found guilty of "economic crimes" and were also comparing stories.
    The first one said, "I charged higher prices than my competitors, and I was found guilty of profiteering, monopolizing and exploiting consumers."

    The second one said, "I charged lower prices than my competitors, and I was found guilty of predatory pricing, cutthroat competing and under-charging."

    The third prisoner said, "I charged the same prices as my competitors, and I was found guilty of collusion, price leadership and cartelization."
  • Unolocogringo
    Why is it when a company is found guilty of these types of charges the government gets the money? Not the people the companys ripped off ?
  • egmccann
    For those asking why rebates are bad, I point you back to the article. Specifically, the word before "rebates" - namely, "unfair."

    You have to dig back a few articles, but this is where it sounds like they say rebates get unfair:

    Intel denies charges related to rebates offered as long as manufacturers agreed to obtain the majority of their processors from Intel as well as paying them to either to delay or cancel the launch of AMD based products.

    So it's not just, say, 100% price for 1-5, 95% for 5-10, 90% for 10-20, 80% for 20-50 or some such (which is just a simplified progression for illustration,) but (say) 75% of cost "as long as you cancel the other guy's orders."
  • Other Comments
  • amuffin
    Stop it, just stop it with the lawsuits.
  • fb39ca4
    They may or may not deserve this, but it would be terrible if they got AMD out of the CPU business.
  • amuffin
    fb39ca4They may or may not deserve this, but it would be terrible if they got AMD out of the CPU business.

    At any time they can get AMD out of the CPU business. Just look at how far behind they are compared to Intel.