Washington (dpa) - Amazon's dealer platform Marketplace also comes after competitive investigations in Europe in the field of attention American regulators.
US Trade Commission FTC is interviewing participating traders to see if Amazon penalizes competitors, Bloomberg financial services reported Wednesday. Among other things, the FTC representatives wanted to know what share of their business is marketplace compared to other platforms such as Ebay. The interest could point to the preparation of official investigations.
At Marketplace, merchants can sell their items through the Amazon Web site, accessing the Group's logistics infrastructure as needed. According to the company, 58 percent of Amazon's gross sales are generated by these sellers.
In Europe, the European Commission launched a marketplace investigation in July. Brussels-based competition watchdogs are investigating whether Amazon, as the operator, uses data from the platform to gain an illicit advantage over its merchants.
At the same time, the Federal Cartel Office had enforced more rights for traders on the platform with its own investigation. For example, requirements for liability for broken products have been reworded, which previously went to the dealers. It was not just about «amazon.de», but about all online marketplaces of the company.
In the US, tech giants such as Google and Facebook have recently come under heavy scrutiny by the regulators after years of hitherto rather loose regulation. There is also a political dimension: US President Donald Trump accuses Internet platforms of repressing conservative opinions and thus working against his re-election in autumn 2020. Amazon founder and boss Jeff Bezos is regularly attacked by Trump. Bezos owns the newspaper Washington Post, in which Trump is often criticized.