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Parcel firms fined US$741.4m for French price fixing

Tuesday, December 15, 2015 - 19:54

[BRUSSELS] France's competition watchdog fined parcel delivery services including units of Deutsche Post AG's DHL, FedEx Corp and TNT Express NV a combined 672.3 million euros (S$1.04 billion) for colluding to increase fees.

Geodis SA, owned by French railway company SNCF, received the largest single penalty of 196.1 million euros, while La Poste SA's Chronopost was fined 99.2 million euros and DHL's French unit must pay 81.2 million euros, France's Autorite de la Concurrence said in a statement on its website.

The French competition authority said 20 companies and an industry group co-ordinated annual rate increases from 2004 and 2010 and 15 of the companies also colluded on a fuel surcharge from 2004 to 2006. Regulators reduced fines for six smaller parcel firms due to financial difficulties.

Tuesday's penalties include a 44.9 million-euro fine for DPD, also owned by La Poste, while FedEx was fined 17 million euros and TNT was ordered to pay 58.5 million euros, the French authority said.

Deutsche Bahn AG blew the whistle on the cartel in late 2008, regulators said and Kuehne + Nagel International AG's Alloin unit came forward with more evidence in 2010.

Deutsche Post spokesman Daniel McGrath said the company received the decision and is reviewing it. La Poste, SNCF, TNT and FedEx didn't immediately respond to requests for comment.

BLOOMBERG