OUTCOME OF CASES HEARD BY THE TRIBUNAL ON WEDNESDAY, 21 SEPTEMBER 2016
Independent gym group to amend its papers regarding complaint involving Discovery
After a lengthy day of argument, SA Gym Group, trading as FitSA, has decided to go back to the drawing board after its amendment application, heard today, 21 September, proved to have not cured the deficiencies in its initial complaint highlighted by Virgin Active and Planet Fitness in their responding papers.
The Tribunal was requested not to make an order until such time as FitSA amends its papers, however, an order as to costs will be decided upon by the Tribunal. A decision will follow in due course.
FitSA had filed a complaint with the Tribunal regarding agreements between Discovery Health Medical Scheme, Discovery Health Pty Ltd, Discovery Vitality Pty Ltd, with gyms Virgin Active South Africa Pty Ltd and Planet Fitness Holdings Pty Ltd.
FitSA’s, and its member gym companies, said in its complaint that the respondents have engaged in exclusive agreements in contravention of section 5(1) and 8(c) of the Competition Act by concluding an agreement whereby Discovery subsidises its members gym fees at Virgin Active and Planet Fitness. FitSA was of the view that this impaired the ability of other independent gyms from competing, as they are unable to match the significantly reduced rates offered to prospective gym members.
Tribunal confirms R2,9m settlement agreement with Ben Jacobs
The Tribunal has confirmed the settlement agreement concluded between the Competition Commission and Ben Jacob for engaging in price fixing and dividing up the market in the ferrous and non-ferrous scrap metal sector.
Ben Jacobs is to pay R2 995 922.70 fine, representing 5% of the company’s annual turnover for the year ended 30 June 2006.
The settlement follows an investigation initiated in 11 August 2006 emanating from a large merger filing in which The New Reclam Group intended to acquire the business of SA Metal Group and its associated company called Waste Control. Documents submitted revealed that various arrangements entered into between Reclam and Waste Control contravened the Competition Act.
Further investigation revealed further contraventions by certain suppliers of ferrous and non-ferrous scrap metal which included that a series of companies entered into agreements to process and supply scrap metal, dividing up the market, price fixing and fix trading conditions.
The matter was then referred to the Tribunal on 23 August 2010.
The settlement includes that Ben Jacobs undertakes not to engage in further activities of this sort again.
Companies that have already paid fines are: The New Reclam Group (R145 972 065.00); Power Metals Recyclers (R12 773 587.55); Universal and Fine Trading (R18 061 596.75),
National Scrap Metal (R17 730 973.60), Abeddac Metals (R4 965 793.70); Amalgamated Metal (R3 264 944.60) and SA Metal Group (R22 430 000.00).
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