Sportswear giant JD Sports, as well as Elite Sports and Rangers FC, have been fined a total of £2 million after being found guilty of price fixing on official merchandise.

The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) investigated and found both Elite Sports and JD Sports have broken competition law.

It found between September 2018 to July 2019, the retail prices of a number of Rangers-branded replica kits and other clothing products were fixed.

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Elite Sports was fined £459,000, JD Sports was fined £1,485,000, and Rangers was fined £225,000.

The penalties include a settlement discount, which reflects the CMA’s resource savings, as a result of all three parties admitting to illegal behavior and assisting the CMA’s investigation in reaching a quicker conclusion.

The penalties imposed on Elite Sports and JD Sports include a discount for providing information.

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This includes their involvement in illegal conduct as well as their cooperation with the investigation under the CMA’s Leniency Programme.

JD will not appeal the penalty, in accordance with the CMA’s standard terms of the settlement.

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CMA Executive Director of Enforcement Michael Grenfell said: “At a time when many people are worried about the rising cost of living, it is important that football fans are able to benefit from competitively priced merchandise.

“Instead, Elite, JD Sports and, to some extent, Rangers, worked together to keep prices high.

“Today’s decision sends a clear message to football clubs and other businesses that illegal anti-competitive collusion will not be tolerated.”

Source: Retail Gazette

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