India slaps 7.5 million dollar fine on 12 companies for Samsung chip system bid rigging

India's antitrust regulator declared it will levy fines totaling approximately 10.46 billion won (USD 7.55 million) on 12 domestic companies, including PS ENG, Daean C&I, and Doota IT, for conspiring to fix bidding prices for a semiconductor monitoring and control system by Samsung SDS.

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Top Indian News Desk
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Courtesy: samsung

On Sunday, India’s antitrust regulator announced hefty fines totaling 10.46 billion won (USD 7.55 million) against 12 domestic companies. These firms were penalised for conspiring to fix bidding prices for a semiconductor monitoring and control system by Samsung SDS.

The companies involved include PS ENG, Daean C&I, Doota IT, and nine others. According to the Fair Trade Commission (FTC), these firms colluded from 2015 through 2023, engaging in prior discussions about quotations to predetermine a winning bidder for 334 bids issued by Samsung.

Impact on Industry Competitiveness

The FTC reported that this collusion aimed to prevent low-cost bidding and block newcomers from winning contracts, following Samsung's adoption of a cost-cutting bidding system in 2015. This practice adversely affected the competitiveness of the semiconductor industry and led to increased prices, ultimately harming customers.

"The collusion had affected the competitiveness of the semiconductor industry and caused damage to customers due to rising prices," stated the FTC in their release, further ordering the companies to implement corrective measures.

Purpose of the System

The semiconductor monitoring and control system in question is crucial for ensuring optimal conditions in semiconductor manufacturing facilities. It oversees the operation of pumps, chillers, specialty gas systems, and other essential components required for chip production, ensuring both the safety of workers and the efficiency of production processes.

Regulatory Actions

This decision underscores the FTC’s commitment to maintaining fair competition and protecting consumer interests in the semiconductor industry. The imposed fines and mandated corrective actions are intended to deter future collusion and promote a more competitive market environment.