Bulgarian regulator fines Microsoft subsidiary for unfair competition

Bulgaria’s competition regulator said on July 1 that it has fined Microsoft Bulgaria 187 000 leva (about 95 600 euro) for unfair trade practices.

The Commission for Protection of Competition (CPC) said that its ruling was in response to a complaint lodged by software distribution company BMG.

During its investigation, CPC found that Microsoft Bulgaria published a statement that “created a mistaken impression that the plaintiff might no longer be able to carry out services related to the offering of Microsoft products.”

While Microsoft Bulgaria did indeed suspend its contractual relationship with BMG, which previously offered Microsoft Volume Licensing programmes and served as an OEM partner, BMG could continue to offer Microsoft Volume Licencing programmes acquired from other authorised Microsoft distributors – a charge that Microsoft Bulgaria did not dispute, the regulator said.

Microsoft Bulgaria’s statement misled several of BMG’s customers, which suspended their contracts with BMG. The regulator said that this represented a breach of competition that resulted in damages for the plaintiff and fined Microsoft Bulgaria the equivalent of two per cent of its revenue for 2012.

(Photo: Michael Kappel/flickr.com)



The Sofia Globe staff

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