On December 28, 2018, the FCA authorized, subject to commitments, the creation of the Cash Paris Tax Refund joint-venture by Global Blue and Planet Payment.[1] The transaction was a continuation of a tender organized by the Aéroports de Paris (“ADP”) group for VAT refund services for international travelers flying out of Paris-Orly and Paris-Roissy airports. Global Blue and Planet Payment, the main operators of VAT refund services in France, committed to create a joint-venture dedicated to the activity, which was the subject of a tender (“downstream” business with respect to their own) if their offer was successful. The FCA dismissed the risk of anti-competitive vertical effects, owing to the control and auditing powers of the ADP group, which allow competitors to access Cash Paris Tax Refund services in a fair and non-discriminatory manner. Nevertheless, the parties committed to separate their businesses from those of the joint-venture in order to avoid any coordination of their behavior, particularly by sharing strategic information.

[1]              FCA, decision n°18-DCC-235 of December 28, 2018, concerning the creation of a joint undertaking by Global Blue and Planet Payment.