Canada’s Competition Bureau reaches deal with Apple, major e-book publishers

“Canada’s business competition watchdog said on Friday it had reached an agreement with Apple Inc and three major e-book publishers that will allow retailers to offer discounts to customers,” Leah Schnurr reports for Reuters.

“The Competition Bureau’s investigation found that an arrangement between the publishers and Apple led to higher prices for Canadians,” Schnurr reports. “The watchdog said it had entered into consent agreements with Apple, Lagardere SCA’s Hachette, Verlagsgruppe Georg von Holtzbrinck GmbH’s Macmillan and CBS Corp’s Simon & Schuster that will let other retailers, including Amazon.com and Kobo, give discounts on e-books by those publishers.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Note: The Competition Bureau could not reach agreement with News Corp’s HarperCollins and therefore filed to halt the publisher’s alleged anti-competitive practices.

3 Comments

  1. I wonder what form that will take? Maybe it will still be ‘agent’ but with a special retailer ‘rebate’ on titles so the publishers get whatever the price they set (minus standard 30%) and the retailer eats the rest up to and beyond the 30% of their ‘cut’. If so it sure sounds like the ‘wholesale’ model but w/o retailers buying ‘allotments’ and all retailers paying the exact same price to the publisher.

    1. But Apple can do no wrong.

      As a person in the tech space and in publishing and a Canadian, I can assure you that Apple was anti-competitive and it would have driven fixed prices and reduced competition had their scheme continued.

      As a Canadian, for the competition Bureau to do much of anything is a very big deal in our liberal, legally weak country. The evidence that Competition Bureau has must be extensive to reach their determinations. Clearly, the consent resolution was getting off easy for Apple and others and I’d say they made the right choice not to continue fighting it.

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