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Russian regulator brings lawsuit against Apple over IPhone price coordination

August 08, 16:04 UTC+3
According to Russian regulator, there are signs of pricing coordination across the country by iPhone resellers, which has become the reason for setting similar retail prices for those smartphones
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© Sergei Bobylev/TASS

MOSCOW, August 8. /TASS/. Russia’s Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) has brought a lawsuit against structures related to Apple over IPhone price coordination, it reported Monday.

"The case on competition protection contemplated in Part 5 of Article 11 has been commenced against a group of persons composed of LLC Apple Rus, Apple Holding B.V., Apple Sales Ireland, Apple Operations International, Apple Inc.," the report said.

According to FAS, there are signs of pricing coordination across Russia by iPhone resellers, which has become the reason for setting similar retail prices for those smartphones.

Earlier FAS launched an inspection regarding several Russian electronics retailers due to suspicions of price-fixing agreement in sales of the latest iPhone models. Current iPhone 6S and iPhone 6S Plus prices set by retailers are slightly different against each other and those listed in the Apple’s press release dated September 28, 2015, which gives reasons to believe that retailers did not determine iPhone prices independently, FAS press service said. The antitrust watchdog has requested information from 16 retailers, among them Euroset, Eldorado, Svyaznoy, re:Store, Ozon.ru, Citilink, Media-Markt, Mobiland , Megafon and Vimpelcom (Beeline brand), as well as the official online Apple store.

"The investigation has revealed that the majority of resellers have set similar prices for iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus since the start of their official sales in Russia and have sustained them for a certain period of time," FAS said, adding that this may be the result of pricing coordination of Russian resellers by Apple group of companies, which has led to setting the prices on the Russian market and adopting "recommended" prices as obligatory.

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