Ann Crotty Writer-at-large

Caxton and Independent Media are the latest media groups to admit price fixing in contravention of the Competition Act and have agreed to a mix of remedies including cash penalties. On Friday, the Competition Tribunal confirmed the consent agreements reached between the Competition Commission and the companies. Both admitted to participating in price fixing and fixing of trading conditions in contravention of the Competition Act. The findings date back to an investigation launched by the commission in November 2011 and focused on the activities of an industry body, Media Credit Co-Ordinators (MCC). The investigation found that the media companies used MCC to offer similar discounts and payment terms to advertising agencies that placed advertisements with members of MCC. The agencies approved by MCC were offered a 16.5% discount for payments made within 45 days while nonmembers were offered 15%. When it concluded its investigation in 2016 the commission gave the media groups the opti...

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