Broadcom fined $14.3 mil. for unfair biz practices against Samsung

Bomi Yoon

This Nov. 6, 2017 file photo shows the Broadcom sign outside the Broadcom office in San Jose, California, U.S. EPA-Yonhap

Korea’s antitrust regulator said Thursday it has decided to slap a 19.1 billion-won ($14.3 million) fine on U.S. chipmaker Broadcom, for its unfair business practices against Samsung Electronics.

The punitive move came after Broadcom forced Samsung to sign a long-term agreement in 2020 by taking advantage of its market dominance and using unlawful tactics, including cutting off its supply and technical support, according to the Fair Trade Commission (FTC).

Samsung, which suffered disruptions in the supply of parts due to Broadcom’s actions, signed the long-term agreement in 2020.

Under the deal, Broadcom compelled Samsung Electronics to procure its smartphone parts worth $760 million annually from 2021 to 2023 and required the Korean tech giant to compensate for any shortfall if the purchasing amount falls below that amount.

The deal, meanwhile, ended in August 2021.

“Broadcom is a company which holds an overwhelming market share in the market for cutting-edge and high-performance mobile device parts that are used in smartphones and tablet PCs,” the FTC said.

“(The company) used unfair tactics, including suspending order approvals, shipments and technical support, to force Samsung Electronics to sign a long-term agreement,” it added.

In June, the FTC rejected Broadcom’s proposal to voluntarily correct its unfair business practices with 20 billion won, ruling in favor of Samsung.

The regulator earlier said the proposal “fell short as a suitable measure to restore the fair trade order and safeguard the interests of other industry players.” (Yonhap)

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