European Commission opens antitrust investigation into Broadcom
The European Commission has opened a formal antitrust investigation into Broadcom in order to assess whether it is restricting competition through exclusivity practices, in breach of EU rules.
In a statement released on Wednesday, the Commission said it intends to impose interim measures during the investigation with regard to the TV and modem chipsets markets.
Margrethe Vestager, Commissioner in charge of competition policy, said: "TV set-top boxes and modems are part of our daily lives, for both work and for leisure. We suspect that Broadcom, a major supplier of components for these devices, has put in place contractual restrictions to exclude its competitors from the market.
“This would prevent Broadcom's customers and, ultimately, final consumers from reaping the benefits of choice and innovation. We also intend to order Broadcom to halt its behaviour while our investigation proceeds, to avoid any risk of serious and irreparable harm to competition."
The investigation will look into Broadcom and whether it sets exclusive purchasing obligations for clients, grants rebates or other advantages conditioned on exclusivity or minimum purchase requirements and if it’s involved in product bundling, abusive IP-related strategies and deliberately degrading interoperability between Broadcom products and other products.