Fines Upheld for Inflated Prices on Computer Hardware

(CN) – The European General Court dismissed appeals Friday from Sony and other computer-equipment companies that were fined for fixing the prices of optical disk drives.

Officials at the European Commission imposed the fines after finding that the companies had joined a cartel between 2004 and 2008 to inflate the prices of products that Dell and Hewlett-Packard needed to lead the global market for personal computers.

Of the cartel members, Toshiba Samsung faced the biggest fine, 41.3 million euros, followed by Hitachi-LG at 37.1 million euros, and then Sony Corp. and Sony Electronics at 21 million euros. The companies Sony Optiarc and Quanta Storage were hit with fines as well of 9.7 million euros and 7.1 million euros, respectively.

On Thursday, the Luxembourg-based General Court found those fines proper and dismissed appeals by each company.

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