In October 2019, the European Commission (EC) announced antitrust measures against Broadcom, accused of restricting competition by engaging in negotiations with key customers. Brussels now wants to make sure that the commitments presented by the American company in various box markets for television channels and modems will be beneficial to consumers. For that, the opinions of the interested parties will be heard before any decision is made, guarantees Margrethe Vestager, vice president of the competition portfolio.
In a statement, the EC explains that in the European Economic Area (EEA) Broadcom has undertaken not to require or induce, through certain types of advantages, an original equipment manufacturer to obtain more than 50% of its requirements in the EEA for System on a Chip (SOC) box of television channels, fiber modems and xDLS modems. In addition, the company also assured that it would not condition the supply or the granting of advantages for these three components to a manufacturer of the original equipment, which, through Broadcom, purchased other such products or any other under the interim measures.
These and other commitments would be in place for five years and, with respect to monitoring these targets, Broadcom has committed to submit a report to the Commission on their application within two weeks of the date of their application. In addition, it would still have to do so annually.
The EC now ensures that the summary of commitments will be published in the EU's Official Journal. Interested parties can present their opinion on the commitments within six weeks of their publication in that same newspaper.
Broadcom vs European Commission: how did it all start?
Probably we all have a box of television channels or a modem in our homes, and their brain is called SOC, and Broadcom is the world leader in the supply of these chips and is responsible for half of the global sale of this technology, guaranteed in 2019 Margrethe Vestager . However, in its investigation, the EC found that six of the contracts in force oblige the company's customers to buy exclusively from the company.