Korean watchdog fines Qualcomm €146m
South Korea's Fair Trade Commission (KFTC) has fined Qualcomm a record 260 billion won (€146 million) for anticompetitive behavior.
The KFTC found that Qualcomm had charged higher CDMA royalties on companies that used chips supplied by competitors. Qualcomm also provided clients with discounts for using its own chips, the commission said.
It ordered Qualcomm to cease these practices, and to stop collecting royalties for obsolete patents. It dropped charges covering W-CDMA and multimedia integration.
Qualcomm denies its actions were anticompetitive and will appeal against the ruling.
“The decision appears to have ignored or discounted evidence... that demonstrates that Qualcomm's business practices in Korea have been lawful, highly beneficial to its customers and the Korean wireless industry, and pro-competitive,” EVP Donald Rosenberg said in a statement.
The fine is double the previous record 104.5 billion won fine issued in 2007. South Korea accounted for 35% of Qualcomm's revenue last fiscal year, Bloomberg said.