26. oktober 2005
Journal nr. 3/1120-0100-1144/FI/LPML
The Council meeting of 26 October 2005
On 26 October 2005 the Danish Competition Council adopted a decision conclud-ing that Mazda Motor Denmark had abused its dominant position under section 11(1) of the Danish Competition Act and Article 82 of the Treaty on the market for original spare parts for Mazda cars.
Mazda Motor Denmark is the Danish importer of Mazda-cars and spare parts through the Mazda International distribution network. It is also the entity to which the right to authorise Mazda-dealerships and Mazda-repairers has been granted by Mazda International.
Under Commission Regulation 1400/2002 the suppliers can decide on the number of distributors, but they cannot quantitatively restrict the number of authorised re-pairers. Any repairer who meets the basic quality criteria has the right to become an authorised repairer under the relevant brand.
The complainant claimed that Mazda Motor Denmark had implemented a number of measures the object of which was to put pressure on the authorised Mazda deal-ers and repairers to primarily or exclusively purchase Mazda spare parts from Mazda Motor Denmark. One of these measures was the demand from Mazda Mo-tor Denmark for unhindered and un-notified access to the dealers’ and repairers’ spare parts store rooms. The claimants claimed that this would give Mazda Motor Denmark an opportunity to put pressure on the dealers and repairers. Mazda Motor Denmark claimed that the unhindered surprise inspections of store rooms, was a necessity if Mazda Motor Denmark was to hinder the use of counterfeit copies of original Mazda spare parts.
The Competition Council concluded that Mazda Motor Denmark holds a dominant position on the market for original spare parts for Mazda cars in Denmark. The spare parts market consists of thousands of different products, which are not substi-tutable. On a number of these products Mazda holds a very strong, dominant posi-tion.
The Competition Council concluded further that Mazda Motor Denmark had abused its dominant position by demanding unhindered access without notice to store rooms, as such an access would give Mazda Motor Denmark the opportunity to ascertain how many spare parts were being supplied by competitors of Mazda. Mazda’s position on the market for spare parts for Mazda cars is of such a nature that this would limit the repairers and dealers in purchasing from Mazda’s competi-tors.
The Competition Council therefore ordered Mazda Motor Denmark to give a three days’ notice about their inspections, and not to demand access to the parts of the store rooms that does not contain trademarked parts, and thus no counterfeit copies.
If Mazda Motor Denmark has a reason to believe that a certain dealer or repairer is deliberately taking part in trademark infringements, and therefore is hiding trade-marked parts from Mazda, Mazda will have to gain full access to all parts of the store rooms through the use of a search warrant.