April 11th, 2019, 18:38 Posted By: wraggster
The European Union Commission has informed six major video game companies that they may be in violation of EU competition rules.
It is the Commission's "preliminary view" that Valve, Bandai Namco, Capcom, Focus Home, Koch Media, and ZeniMax prevented consumers from purchasing games cross-border from other EU member states.
In a statement released today, the Commission suggested that Valve entered bilateral agreements with the publishers to geo-block their games.
If the companies are found in violation, the Commission can issue a fine worth up to 10% of their annual worldwide turnover.
However, the Statement of Objections is just the Commission's first step to investing suspected violations.
Once the concerned parties have been informed, they are able to examine the Commission's investigation file, reply in writing, and request an oral hearing to present their comments on the case before the Commission and national competition authorities.
"In a true digital single market, European consumers should have the right to buy and play video games of their choice regardless of where they live in the EU," said commissioner in charge of competition policy, Margrethe Vestager.
"Consumers should not be prevented from shopping around between member states to find the best available deal. Valve and the five PC video game publishers now have the chance to respond to our concerns."
In a public statement, Koch Media claimed the proceedings date back to business performed before 2015.
"Koch Media will monitor the process closely and is fully committed to comply with all rules and regulations," it added.
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