Cartels & Other Competition Criminal Matters

On June 23, 2022, Bill C-19, also known as the Budget Implementation Act, 2022, No.1 (“BIA”), received royal assent. The BIA was tabled in Parliament on April 7, 2022 and included significant proposed amendments to the Competition Act (the “Act”).

Continue Reading Significant Amendments to Canada’s Competition Act Are Now Law: What You Need to Know

Competition law generally classifies relationships between firms as vertical (supplier and customer) or horizontal (competitors or potential competitors). The nature of the relationship has important implications for how the law applies.

Continue Reading Navigating Competition Law Compliance in Dual Distribution Relationships – Recent Case Law and Lessons from Europe

Since the Supreme Court of Canada’s 2013 trilogy of decisions in Pro-SysSun-Rype and Infineon, and its 2019 decision in Godfrey, plaintiffs have had considerable success certifying private antitrust/competition class actions in Canada.  It is thus noteworthy that a number of recent decisions suggest a growing judicial willingness to limit or dismiss proposed competition class actions at the certification stage or before certification through preliminary motions.

Continue Reading Competition Class Actions in Canada: Takeaways from 2021 and Trends for 2022

Competition, marketing and foreign investment law saw a number of changes in the past year. Many of these changes were in response to the continuing COVID-19 pandemic, which has significantly changed the way Canadians, businesses and government agencies operate. Despite the pandemic, the Competition Bureau (the “Bureau”) has actively continued its enforcement activity and provided a number of guidance documents to help businesses stay onside the Competition Act (the “Act”). Similarly, Canada’s Investment Review Division (“IRD”) of Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada (“ISED”) has also responded to the challenges resulting from the pandemic.

Continue Reading Fasken’s Forecast for 2022 and Beyond: 2021’s Top 10 Trends in Canadian Competition, Marketing & Foreign Investment Law and what Businesses should expect in 2022

Business people in South Africa who do business by responding to tenders do so well aware that empowerment credentials assist in standing a good chance of winning. Companies seeking to win a tender over their rivals will therefore often put in tenders in their own name as well as with an empowerment partner. This carries very real competition risks.

A number of years ago, textile manufacturers Berg River Textiles and Da Gama Textiles were both competing for tenders to supply uniforms to various government departments. In each instance they partnered with black empowerment entities, evidently in the hope that this would be of assistance in winning the tenders. Both fell foul of the competition law provisions regarding collusive tendering.

Continue Reading Tendering with an Empowerment Partner? Be Wary of the Collusion Risk

On November 4, 2021, Justine Reisler and Robin Spillette attended the Global Competition Review’s annual Women in Antitrust conference in Washington, D.C. The event featured an incredible lineup of female lawyers and economists on panels addressing some of the most cutting-edge topics in antitrust today, namely: (i) assessing deal risk in a time of changing standards, (ii) approaches being taken by competition agencies to address global concerns about Big Tech, (iii) sustainable economic development, and (iv) innovation in the pharmaceutical sector.

Continue Reading Key Themes from the Global Competition Review’s Annual Women in Antitrust Conference

The recent Kobe Mohr v. National Hockey League[1] decision of the Federal Court (the “Decision”) provides important jurisprudential guidance on the application of sections 45 and 48 of the Competition Act (the “Act”).  These provisions prohibit naked anti-competitive conspiracies and conspiracies relating participation in professional sports respectively.

Continue Reading Federal Court Decision Clarifies Scope of Competition Act Conspiracy Provisions

As noted in our prior blog post titled “New Competitor Collaboration Guidelines”, the updated Competitor Collaboration Guidelines (the “CCGs”) issued earlier this month include a new hypothetical example of an illegal “hub and spoke” conspiracy among a mid-stream distributor and the retailers selling its products. As discussed in more detail below,

Non-compete clauses are included in virtually all purchase and sale agreements. They are designed to ensure that purchasers realize the full value of the acquired business by, for example, prohibiting competition from vendors within a defined area for a certain amount of time.[1] There is no question that such clauses are valuable to purchasers and essential in the mergers and acquisition context.

The Canadian Competition Bureau (the “Bureau”) has long recognized that non-compete clauses “can serve legitimate purposes”. However, the Bureau’s approach to non-compete clauses has been revised in its updated Competitor Collaboration Guidelines (the “CCGs”), which were issued on May 6, 2021 – see our prior blog post titled “New Competitor Collaboration Guidelines”. Significantly, as discussed in more detail below, the Bureau has signalled that it may consider such clauses under the criminal cartel provisions in the Competition Act (the “Act”) where they, for example, amount to a market allocation agreement or there is evidence that they are nothing more than a “sham”.
Continue Reading Non-Compete Clauses – So What’s the Risk?

On May 6, 2021, the Competition Bureau (the “Bureau”) released its new (and long-awaited)  competitor collaboration guidelines (the “New CCGs”). This is the first update to these guidelines since the previous version was published by the Bureau over a decade ago, in 2009 (the “2009 CCGs”).

The New CCGs