Bosch (Robert Bosch GmbH)

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In the Matter of Robert Bosch GmbH, a corporation
FTC Matter/File Number:

1210081

Docket Number:

C-4377

Enforcement Type:

Part 2 Consents

Case Summary

On 11/26/2012, the FTC required Robert Bosch GmbH to sell a business that makes equipment used to recharge vehicle air conditioning systems as part of an agreement resolving charges that Bosch’s acquisition of SPX Service Solutions U.S. LLC would have been anticompetitive. Under the agreement, Bosch also will grant manufacturers licenses to key patents that they need in order to compete in the market for this equipment. The proposed settlement order also required Bosch to end agreements that restrict third parties from advertising, servicing, distributing, or selling competitive products in the United States. Under the proposed settlement with the FTC, Bosch agreed to sell its automotive air conditioner repair equipment business, including RTI Technologies, Inc., to automotive equipment manufacturer, Mahle Clevite, Inc. Bosch also agreed to resolve allegations that, before its acquisition by Bosch, SPX harmed competition in the market for this equipment by reneging on a commitment to license key, standard-essential patents (SEPs) on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory (FRAND) terms. The FTC alleged that SPX reneged on its obligation to license on FRAND terms by seeking injunctions against willing licensees of those patents. Bosch has agreed to abandon these claims for injunctive relief. On 4/24/2013, the FTC approved a final order settling charges that Robert Bosch GmbH’s acquisition of the SPX Service Solutions business of SPX Corporation would have given it a virtual monopoly in the market for air conditioning recycling, recovery, and recharge devices for vehicles.