Feeds

Flatscreen makers fined €649m for price fixing

Squealer Samsung gets off, but others must cough up

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

The European Commission has fined six LCD panel makers €649m for fixing the price of their screens.

The six companies must pay €648.9m for fixing prices for LCD screens between October 2001 and February 2006. The six cartel members are: Samsung Electronics, LG Display, AU Optronics, Chimei InnoLux Corporation, Chunghwa Picture Tubes and HannStar Display Corporation.

The investigation found that the companies held monthly meetings over four years in order to set price ranges and minimum prices. They also swapped information on future production, how much factory capacity they were using and other commercially sensitive information.

The screens are used in laptops, computer monitors and TVs.

The meetings, known as "Crystal meetings" took place 60 times, mostly in Taiwanese hotels.

European investigators also found evidence that the six knew what they were doing was illegal. One memo warned everyone taking part: "to take care of security/confidentiality matters and to limit written communication". The memo also drew attention to the Commission's successful investigation into DRAM prices.

Fines were based on the companies' sales within Europe. Samsung Electronics was granted full immunity from the fines because it squealed on the other five cartel members.

LG Display got full immunity from the 2006 fines because it provided evidence that the cartel continued. It was fined €215m. AU was fined €117m, while Chimei must pay 300m. The remaining two firms, Chunghwa and HannStar, must pay €9m and €8m respectively.

See the Commission's statement on LCD price fixing here.

In other Commission news, it is making legally binding an agreement offered by Visa Europe to cut interbank fees for debit cards. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
Apple's iWatch? They cannae do it ... they don't have the POWER
Analyst predicts fanbois will have to wait until next year
The agony and ecstasy of SteamOS: WHERE ARE MY GAMES?
And yes it does need a fat HDD (or SSD, it's cool with either)
Barnes & Noble: Swallow a Samsung Nook tablet, please ... pretty please
Novelslab finally on sale with ($199 - $20) price tag
Kate Bush: Don't make me HAVE CONTACT with your iPHONE
Can't face sea of wobbling fondle implements. What happened to lighters, eh?
Apple to build WORLD'S BIGGEST iStore in Dubai
It's not the size of your shiny-shiny...
Just in case? Unverified 'supersize me' iPhone 6 pics in sneak leak peek
Is bigger necessarily better for the fruity firm's flagship phone?
Steve Jobs had BETTER BALLS than Atari, says Apple mouse designer
Xerox? Pff, not even in the same league as His Jobsiness
Apple analyst: fruity firm set to shift 75 million iPhones
We'll have some of whatever he's having please
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.
7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
BYOD's dark side: Data protection
An endpoint data protection solution that adds value to the user and the organization so it can protect itself from data loss as well as leverage corporate data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
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?