Chairman of the Office confirmed decision on cartel of IT companies in the Olomouc Region

The Chairman of the Office for the Protection of Competition Petr Mlsna confirms in his second-instance decision that the companies AUTOCONT, TESCO SW, ICZ, MERIT GROUP, A-Scan, Asseco Central Europe and FPO committed anticompetitive illegal conduct in connection with the public contract entitled "Development of E-Government Services in the Olomouc Region", which was awarded by the Olomouc Region in 2012.

The Chairman of the Office confirmed that the parties to the proceedings had committed an infringement of the Act on the Protection of Competition when they divided the performance of the public contract in question through mutual contacts and exchange of information. The members of the cartel also illegally participated in the design of the Bid Invitation. The aim of the prohibited agreement was to influence the outcome of the award procedure in such a way that the bid in which all participants would participate would be the winning bid.

In this context, the Chairman Petr Mlsna rejected the objections contained in the appeals: "On the basis of the facts supported by the evidence found, I consider all the findings made by the first instance of the Office in the contested decision to be correct and proven." Although the parties disputed the individual pieces of circumstantial evidence, according to the Chairman of the Office, they form a complex and coherent chain which can be interpreted only as prohibited conduct and nothing else, and the scope of this evidence is quite above standard.

However, the Chairman of the Office did not agree with the reasoning of the fines imposed, as the reasoning of the first instance was insufficiently described in the decision to meet the requirements of the judicial review to justify the penalty. The first instance of the Office now has to provide a new and proper justification for the calculation of the fines.

 Press Unit ÚOHS



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