Feb 1, 2022
Pierre Cardin, Ahlers distribution deals face EU antitrust scrutiny
Feb 1, 2022
French fashion house Pierre Cardin’s licensing and distribution deals with German clothing maker Ahlers may breach European Union rules on online and cross-border sales, EU antitrust regulators said on Monday after opening an investigation.
The move by the European Commission, which acts as the EU competition enforcer, followed dawn raids at a German clothing maker in June last year.
“Pierre Cardin and Ahlers may have breached EU competition rules by restricting the ability of Pierre Cardin’s licensees to sell Pierre Cardin-licensed products cross-border, including offline and online, as well as to specific customer groups,” the Commission said in a statement.
The EU executive has reinforced rules against curbs on cross-border and online sales as part of a push to boost e-commerce.
The investigation will focus on whether Pierre Cardin and Ahlers, its largest licensee, have developed a strategy to prevent parallel imports and sales to specific customer groups of Pierre Cardin-branded products by enforcing certain restrictions in the licensing agreements.
Violations of EU rules are punishable by fines up to 10% of a company’s global turnover and orders to the firms to change business practices.
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