World

European Commission fines 8 companies involved in optical disc drive bid-rigging cartel

  • European Commissioner for Competition Margrethe Vestager speaks during a media conference at EU headquarters in Brussels on Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2015. The European Union is demanding that U.S. coffee chain Starbucks and carmaker Fiat repay up to 30 million euros ($34 million) each in tax breaks they received from EU nations, in a major ruling to cut down on sweet tax deals global multinationals often shop for. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo)

    European Commissioner for Competition Margrethe Vestager speaks during a media conference at EU headquarters in Brussels on Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2015. The European Union is demanding that U.S. coffee chain Starbucks and carmaker Fiat repay up to 30 million euros ($34 million) each in tax breaks they received from EU nations, in a major ruling to cut down on sweet tax deals global multinationals often shop for. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo)  (The Associated Press)

  • European Commissioner for Competition Margrethe Vestager speaks during a media conference at EU headquarters in Brussels on Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2015. The European Union is demanding that U.S. coffee chain Starbucks and carmaker Fiat repay up to 30 million euros ($34 million) each in tax breaks they received from EU nations, in a major ruling to cut down on sweet tax deals global multinationals often shop for. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo)

    European Commissioner for Competition Margrethe Vestager speaks during a media conference at EU headquarters in Brussels on Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2015. The European Union is demanding that U.S. coffee chain Starbucks and carmaker Fiat repay up to 30 million euros ($34 million) each in tax breaks they received from EU nations, in a major ruling to cut down on sweet tax deals global multinationals often shop for. (AP Photo/Virginia Mayo)  (The Associated Press)

The European Commission has slapped fines totaling 116 million euros ($132 million) on eight companies involved in a cartel linked to the supply of optical disc drives to computer companies Dell and Hewlett Packard.

The commission said Wednesday the companies illicitly colluded "to avoid aggressive competition in procurement tenders organized by Dell and HP."

The commission says some company representatives — knowing their actions were illegal — met in parking lots and movie theaters to discuss tender details for supplying products such as CD and DVD drives.

Among companies fined were Sony, Toshiba Samsung Storage Technology and Hitachi-LG Data Storage. Philips and Lite-On also were fined, but had the punishments waived because they were first to reveal the existence of the cartel.