Feeds

EU may be lubricating IBM anti-trust probe

Mainframe scuffle primed, yet muffled

Build a business case: developing custom apps

European Union regulators may be preparing for an anti-trust review of IBM, following on the complaints of start-up mainframe challenger, Platform Solutions (PSI).

Bloomberg reports today that the EU is gathering information on IBM's mainframe business, citing two anonymous sources close to the case. The request for such data could mark the earliest stages of an official review into the mainframe claims.

Platform Solutions, which makes Itanium-based servers capable of running IBM's mainframe software, has lobbed similar anti-trust complaints against Big Blue stateside as well. The firm argues that IBM is trying to kill mainframe market competition by refusing to support customers running its software on PSI's systems.

PSI filed its complaint with the European Commission last October. It claims IBM violates an EC prohibition on abuse of market dominance by refusing to supply interface information about its mainframe computers, as well as refusing mainframe licenses to third parties.

IBM has also filed a lawsuit back at PSI in America, charging it with patent infringement.

An inquiry into IBM's mainframe business could suggest the EU determined there's at least some possible merit to PSI's antitrust complaint.

EU antitrust regulators aren't obligated to pursue the cases brought before them. The Commission's next step will be deciding whether to launch a formal probe into the matter. ®

Update:

"The case is progressing in both Europe and in the U.S," said IBM spokesman Fred McNeese ... "IBM has spent great time and expense developing its technology and will defend its intellectual property rights vigorously. We also are confident that the Commission will protect IBM's property rights and reject PSI's claims. It is no violation of competition laws for IBM to rightfully seek to prevent PSI from selling a product built through the violation of IBM's intellectual property rights."

We're awaiting official comments from PSI.

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
The Return of BSOD: Does ANYONE trust Microsoft patches?
Sysadmins, you're either fighting fires or seen as incompetents now
Microsoft: Azure isn't ready for biz-critical apps … yet
Microsoft will move its own IT to the cloud to avoid $200m server bill
Shoot-em-up: Sony Online Entertainment hit by 'large scale DDoS attack'
Games disrupted as firm struggles to control network
Cutting cancer rates: Data, models and a happy ending?
How surgery might be making cancer prognoses worse
Silicon Valley jolted by magnitude 6.1 quake – its biggest in 25 years
Did the earth move for you at VMworld – oh, OK. It just did. A lot
VMware's high-wire balancing act: EVO might drag us ALL down
Get it right, EMC, or there'll be STORAGE CIVIL WAR. Mark my words
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Scale data protection with your virtual environment
To scale at the rate of virtualization growth, data protection solutions need to adopt new capabilities and simplify current features.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?