Judgment (Penalty)

Neutral citation:

[2005] CAT 22


19 May 2005



Judgment on appeals brought by Umbro Holdings Limited (“Umbro”) Manchester United Plc (“MU”), and on the penalty aspects of appeals brought by Allsports Limited (“Allsports”) and JJB Sports Plc (“JJB Sports”), against a decision of the OFT finding that Umbro, MU, Allsports and JJB Sports, together with other undertakings, had infringed the Chapter I prohibition contained in section 2 of the Competition Act 1998 by entering into certain agreements and concerted practices designed to fix the prices of certain replica football shirts during 2000 and 2001. At an earlier date the Tribunal had largely dismissed the JJB Sports Plc appeals of Allsports and JJB Sports on liability: [2004] CAT 17.

The Tribunal altered the penalties payable, in the cases of Umbro and JJB Sports partly as a result of the Tribunal’s judgment on liability, as follows:

The penalty for Umbro was reduced from £6.641 million to £5.3 million;
The penalty for MU was reduced from £1.652 million to £1.5 million;
The penalty for Allsports was increased from £1.35 million to £1.42 million;
The penalty for JJB Sports was reduced from £8.373 million to £6.7 million.

Thus, for the first time the Tribunal increased the amount of a penalty on appeal, in this case on the basis that, as emerged during the hearing on liability, a 5%“discount” in the level of the penalty imposed on Allsports by the OFT in the decision to reflect Allsports’ co-operation during the administrative stage had been granted on a false basis.

This is an unofficial summary prepared by the Registry of the Competition Appeal Tribunal.