QUALCOMM, Inc. (QCOM): EU Antitrust Investigation May Start In The Fall

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QUALCOMM, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM) may be the subject of an antitrust investigation by the European Commission in the fall, a report from Re/code reveals.

Citing several unnamed sources said to be familiar with the issue, Re/code points to a complaint filed years ago by QUALCOMM, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM) rival NVIDIA Corporation (NASDAQ:NVDA) as the cause of the antitrust probe.

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The possible investigation of QUALCOMM, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM) comes as the company is also facing difficulties in collecting royalties in China after the country’s authorities have started probing the semiconductors giant for potential monopolistic practices.

According to Re/code, three sources have told them that QUALCOMM, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM) may face the investigation due to a complaint filed by Icera, a company acquired by NVIDIA Corporation (NASDAQ:NVDA) in 2011 for $367 million in cash.

“The Commission may open a case after the summer,” one source is quoted by the publication as saying.

This same source reportedly told Re/code that the fast-tracking of the investigation against QUALCOMM, Inc. after years being dormant is a result of a landmark 1.1 billion euro fine levied against Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) last June.

The NVIDIA Corporation (NASDAQ:NVDA) company in the complaint accused QUALCOMM, Inc. of using incentives via its patents and exclusionary pricing of products to prevent business going to Icera, Re/code reports another source revealing.

According to the publication, companies can be fined as much as a tenth of their total revenues for violating European Union antitrust law.

QUALCOMM, Inc. (NASDAQ:QCOM) shareholders includes Generation Investment Management managed by David Blood and Al Gore. Its largest holding, the hedge fund reported about 7.59 million shares in the company by the end of the first half of the year.

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