Conduct in the modelling sector

The CMA has concluded that 5 model agencies and their trade association have breached Chapter I of the CA98 and Article 101 TFEU, and imposed penalties totalling £1,533,500.

Case reference: CE/9859-14

Case timetable

Date Action
27 March 2017 Publication of non-confidential version of infringement decision
16 December 2016 Infringement decision issued
October to December 2016 Consideration of parties’ representations; decision on case outcome; preparation of infringement decision
November 2016 Oral hearing with the parties on the draft penalty statements
September to November 2016 Period for written representations on the draft penalty statements
27 September 2016 Draft penalty statements issued
July to September 2016 Receipt and consideration of written representations on the statement of objections
May 2016 Statement of objections issued
April to May 2016 Assessing evidence and considering next steps (further update by end of June)
March 2016 Concluded main investigation
October 2015 Decision taken to proceed with the investigation
March to September 2015 Initial investigation: information gathering, including issuance of formal or informal information requests and parties’ responses
24 March 2015 Investigation opened

Change log

The following changes have been made to the case timetable since it was first published in March 2015:

Date of change Reason for change Change made to timetable
25 May 2016 Assessment of evidence completed ahead of schedule End date for assessing evidence and considering next steps changed from June 2016 to May 2016

Non-confidential infringement decision

27 March 2017: The CMA has published a non-confidential version of the decision in this case.

Infringement decision

16 December 2016: The CMA issued a decision finding that 5 model agencies - FM Models, Models 1, Premier, Storm and Viva - and their trade association, the AMA, breached Chapter I of the Competition Act 1998 (CA98) and Article 101 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU), and imposing penalties totalling £1,533,500.

Procedural Officer decision

16 December 2016: The CMA has published a Procedural Officer decision concerning the investigation.

Statement of objections

25 May 2016: The CMA issued a statement of objections (SO) alleging that 5 agencies for fashion models and their trade association, the Association of Model Agents (AMA), have breached UK and EU competition law.

In its SO, the CMA alleges that, from April 2013 to March 2015, FM Models, Models 1, Premier, Storm and Viva agreed to exchange confidential, competitively sensitive information, including future pricing information, and in some instances agreed a common approach to pricing. The CMA alleges that the AMA was also a party to the breach and that it played an important role in aspects of the alleged infringement.

Case information

On 24 March 2015, the CMA launched an investigation into suspected anti-competitive arrangements in the UK modelling sector which may infringe Chapter I of the Competition Act 1998 and/or Article 101 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.

On 25 May 2016 the CMA issued a statement of objections to 5 model agencies and a trade association.

On 16 December 2016, the CMA issued a decision finding that 5 model agencies - FM Models, Models 1, Premier, Storm and Viva - and their trade association, the AMA, breached Chapter I of the Competition Act 1998 and Article 101 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, and imposing penalties totalling £1,533,500.

Further detail of the CMA’s procedures in Competition Act 1998 cases is available here: CMA’s procedures in Competition Act cases.

Contacts

Media contact

Simon Belgard (simon.belgard@cma.gsi.gov.uk, 0203 738 6472)

Assistant project director

Helen Cameron – CA98 (Helen.Cameron@cma.gsi.gov.uk, 020 3738 6515)

Project director

Lucília Falsarella Pereira (Lucilia.Falsarella-Pereira@cma.gsi.gov.uk, 020 3738 6778)

Senior responsible officer

Stephen Blake (Stephen.Blake@cma.gsi.gov.uk, 020 3738 6469)

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