UPC has been ordered to pay a fine of CHF 30 million after being found in breach of Switzerland’s competition rules.
The Competition Commission (COMCO) found UPC’s refusal to allow rival Swisscom access to the Swiss Ice Hockey Championship to be illegal under the country’s anti-trust lawa.
UPC acquired exclusive rights to broadcast matches from the Swiss Ice Hockey Championship for the years 2017 to 2022.
“UPC has abused this market dominance by refusing Swisscom any offer to broadcast live ice hockey until summer 2020. By this conduct, UPC has illegally impeded Swisscom in competition,” COMCO said in a statement.
An appeal against the decision can be made to the Federal Administrative Court.
UPC responded by announcing plans to extend coverage of its MySports channel to Swisscom customers, putting it in another 3.3 million households.
In a statement, the Erlenbach-based operator said they disagreed with the decision of the regulator. “UPC and MySports also took note of the decision of the Federal Competition Commission (COMCO), published on 20 October 2020. UPC disagrees with COMCO’s decision regarding exclusive ice hockey rights and will therefore file a challenge before the Federal Administrative Court. The agreement with Swisscom, which was implemented and communicated today, was concluded in summer 2020 after several months of negotiations.”
UPC customers will now also have access to the Swisscom-operated Blue Sport, which features live coverage of UEFA Champions League, UEFA Europa League and Serie A.