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According to the Italian Competition Authority (AGCM), Amazon has abused existing antitrust laws. This concerns the use of unfair practices in exploiting its dominant position against independent sellers on the Amazon.it shopping platform.
AGCM believes that Amazon has abused its dominant position among competing sellers. The allegations mainly involve forcing third-party sellers to use Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA), a proprietary logistics service from Amazon. The operator has bundled the use of FBA with a series of exclusive offers, which helps increase visibility and sales on the Amazon.it platform.
The Italian Competition Authority at the same time justifies that sellers who do not use FBA are not treated in the same way. Among other things, they cannot participate in Amazon’s loyalty program, which allows free shipping on selected products. This also applies to the positioning of offers from independent sellers, for example at special events (such as Black Friday or Cybermonday), whose products occupy remote places on the platform.
Amazon rejects the allegations
Amazon disagrees with the allegations made. According to the American giant, the logistics services offered are voluntary in nature. Moreover, each seller has the option to use different sales channels.
“More than half of all annual sales on Amazon in Italy come from SMBs, and their success is at the heart of our business model. Small and medium-sized businesses have multiple channels to sell their products both online and offline: Amazon is just one of those options. We constantly invest to support the growth of the 18,000 Italian SMBs that sell on Amazon, and we provide multiple tools to our sellers, including those who manage shipments themselves,” – assessed the situation Amazon.