ACCC fines TEAC $190,000 for price fixing

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ACCC fines TEAC $190,000 for price fixing

The Federal Court of Australia has ruled TEAC Australia and its national sales manager, Warren Allison to pay a fine totalling $190,000 for resale price maintenance.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) instituted proceedings against TEAC and Allison in relation to conduct that sought to stop an independent retailer of electronic products from advertising prices below the 'go price' specified by TEAC.

Justice Kenny in the Melbourne court ordered TEAC to pay $175,000 in penalties for breaching the resale price maintenance provisions of the Trade Practices Act 1974 and Mr Allison $15,000 for being knowingly concerned in the conduct.

Justice Kenny said: "The respondents have co-operated with the ACCC…acknowledged their liability at the earliest stage…" and "…these are mitigating factors that result in a substantial discount from the penalties that would other wise be appropriate."

ACCC Chairman, Graeme Samuel, said companies and the individuals who act for them must understand that resale price maintenance is prohibited under the Trade Practices Act 1974.

"Resale price maintenance prevents retailers from competing on price and it prevents consumers from getting the best price they can. It is conduct which the ACCC will vigorously pursue. It's not for TEAC or its management to determine the selling price of its customers; that decision is one for the customers having regard to their own considerations, competitiveness and efficiency,” he said.

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