Source: All England Reporter
Publisher Citation: [2014] All ER (D) 208 (Jan)
Neutral Citation: [2014] EWHC 64 (Ch)
Court: Chancery Division

Mrs Justice Rose

Representation Paul Harris QC, Ben Rayment and Michael Armitage (instructed by Bond Dickinson LLP) for ATS.
  Tim Ward QC and Colin West (instructed by King & Wood Mallesons LLP) for LO.
Judgment Dates: 28 January 2014


Company - Competition - Abuse of dominant position - Claimant company being sole provider of bus service between Luton Airport and Victoria Station - Defendant airport management organisation (LO) putting concession out to tender - Concession being awarded to third party company - Claimant commencing proceedings - Whether LO having dominant position in the market - Whether LO abusing dominant position in the tendering process - Whether giving of exclusivity period to successful tenderer abuse of dominant position - Whether objective justification for restriction of competition caused by terms of concession awarded to successful party.

The Case

Company Competition. The Chancery Division considered a dispute arising from the awarding of a concession to a bus company by Luton Airport (LO), to run a bus service from Victoria Station to Luton Airport. The claimant travel company contended that, in awarding the contract to a different company, the airport had abused its dominant position. The court held that, assuming that LO had in fact been in a dominant position, it had not abused its position in the way in which the tender for awarding the concession had been managed, but that it had abused its dominant position by giving a seven-year exclusivity period to the successful company.

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