The Competition Authority imposed a fine of more than 125 million euros on Italian eyewear manufacturer Luxottica, the world's leading supplier, for having "imposed" in France, "on opticians, retail prices and their credit. forbidden to sell on the internet, ”she announced Thursday.
Two other groups, LVMH and Chanel, were fined respectively 500,000 euros and 130,000 euros, the first for the same two reasons, the second for the sole prohibition of selling online, said a statement.
These practices have affected "large national brands" of optics such as Alain Afflelou, Krys, GrandVision or Optical Center, details the gendarme of the competition.
The leader of the sector Luxottica, very heavily sanctioned, "between 2005 and 2014", "distributed to its distributors so-called + advised + prices and had encouraged them to maintain a certain level of retail price for its products".
These practices concern the eyewear of famous brands licensed with Luxottica, including Chanel, Ray ‑ Ban, Oakley, Prada, Burberry, Bulgari, Dolce & Gabanna, Armani, Michael Kors, Miu Miu, Ralph Lauren.
Luxottica has drawn up lists of "recommended prices" and concluded, with its distributors, selective distribution contracts "interpreted as notably prohibiting discounts and promotions during retail sales".
In addition, the Italian group "imposed on its distributors certain restrictions as to the advertising that they carried out on their prices and organized the monitoring of these prices", continues the Authority.
Finally, "opticians who persist in ignoring Luxottica's messages have seen retaliatory measures applied," she said.
A fourth company, Logo (for the TAG Heuer brand), was pinned for having also restricted the pricing freedom of opticians who sold its products, but having been placed in compulsory liquidation in 2016, it was not sanctioned.
In addition, clauses in the licensing contracts entered into by these groups as well as authorized retailer charters for Luxottica, "prohibited the online sale of sunglasses and eyeglass frames by opticians", an offense deemed less.
© 2021 AFP