The European Commission has said that it is carrying out unannounced inspections in two EU member states at the premises of companies involved in the online ordering and delivery of food, groceries and other consumer goods.
The EU body has concerns that the companies concerned may have violated EU competition rules that prohibit cartels and restrictive business practices.
It adds that today’s inspections (21 November) are being are conducted in the context of an investigation for which it carried out inspections in 2022.
“The scope of the investigation, initially including alleged market allocations, has now been extended to cover additional conduct in the form of alleged no-poach agreements and exchanges of commercially sensitive information,” the commission said in a statement.
It describes unannounced inspections as “a preliminary step” towards investigating suspected anti-competitive practices.
The EU body points out that such inspections do not mean that the companies are guilty of anti-competitive behaviour, nor does it pre-judge the outcome of the investigation itself.