Monday, April 15, 2013
Posted by D. Daniel Sokol
Jose Gonzalez-Magaz & William T. Gordon (Steptoe & Johnson LLP) asks From Microsoft to Google—Continued Divergence in Transatlantic Antitrust Settlements?
ABSTRACT: Parties seeking dual settlements with the European Commission and the U.S. antitrust agencies are challenged by their differing frameworks. Part of the complexity stems from their separate approaches to competition law enforcement, while other components of the problem relate to their respective settlement processes. Since Microsoft settled its Windows case in the United States in 2001, but was unable to achieve that result with the EC, parties seeking resolution of anticompetitive allegations by means of concessions must take into account the risk of diverging settlement opportunities across the Atlantic. A decade later, the stress of that concern is intensified by Google's recent settlement with the U.S. Federal Trade Commission and the prospect of the EC again not following suit.