EU hits Intel with $400 million antitrust fine in long-running computer chip case


European Union antitrust enforcers slapped Intel on Friday with a fresh $400 million fine in a long-running legal fight that the chipmaker appeared to have won last year.

The European Commission imposed the 376.4 million-euro fine after a court threw out an original 1.06 billion-euro penalty issued in 2009 over allegations that the Santa Clara, California-based company used illegal sales tactics to shut out smaller rival AMD.

The commission, the 27-nation bloc's top antitrust watchdog, accused Intel of abusing its dominant position in the global market for x86 microprocessors with a strategy to exclude rivals by using rebates and sales restrictions.

The EU's General Court last year annulled the original decision, saying that the commission's analysis of the rebates didn't meet legal standards.

However, the court confirmed that the sales restrictions amounted to an abuse of Intel's dominant market position. It couldn't decide how the total fine could be divided up between the two offenses, leaving the commission to come up with a new number.

"The lower fine imposed by today's decision reflects the narrower scope of the infringement compared to the 2009 Commission decision," the EU watchdog said.

Intel's European press team didn't respond immediately to an email seeking comment.

Comments 2
Thumb chrisrushlau 9 months

I wonder if anything in EU/NATO-land works well. "Success will be punished!"

Thumb abe.linconstein 9 months

I gather chrisrushlau is looking for a new line. Foreign affairs seems to be a dead end.