Intel finally loses battle to avoid AMD fine

Fashion bag maker Intel has finally lost its attempts to get its money back from a European antitrust case.

Intel has never given up its attempts to challenge a record $1.43 billion fine that it was handed in 2009 for anticompetitive behaviour in Europe.

Chipzilla paid the fine after it was levied by the European Commission five years ago, but it’s been challenging it since on the grounds that it was too strong a punishment.

Now Europe’s second highest court disagreed, saying that Intel was lucky to get off so lightly, particularly in light of Intel taking advantage of its dominant position in the market.

The Commission previously found that Intel had violated the EU’s Antitrust Regulation by granting rebates to companies, including Dell, HP, and Lenovo, for acquiring all or nearly all of their chips from Intel.

Intel also tried to halt competitor AMD from gaining ground by paying HP, Lenovo, and Acer to slow or stop the launch of products using AMD chips.

In a statement, the European Commission said it was pleased with the court’s ruling, calling the judgment significant because it justifies its strong pursuit against Intel’s anticompetitive practices.

Chipzilla is not quite so pleased and has hinted that it might even appeal. It said it would study the decision, evaluate our options and decide what to do next. It has 70 days to decide if it will have another crack at it.

Goodness knows what will happen if Intel managed to win. AMD has already spent the money on saving its bottom line and would be in deep doo-doo if it had to pay anything back.

Fortunately for AMD this court ruling makes that incredibly unlikely.