Case details

Anticompetitive practices
Case reference
Entities involved
  • Cabelte – Cabos Eléctricos e Telefónicos, S.A.
  • Quintas & Quintas – Condutores Eléctricos, S.A.
  • Solidal – Condutores Eléctricos S.A.
Natural persons involved
  • Energy and Fuels
Activity (NACE)
  • D35 - Electricity, gas, steam, cold and hot water and cold air
Investigated practice
  • Horizontal agreement
Legal provisions
Case origin
Dawn raids
Cooperation with sector regulators
AdC’s decision
Settlement decision
  • Cabelte – Cabos Eléctricos e Telefónicos, S.A.
  • Solidal – Condutores Eléctricos S.A.
Sanction imposed
  • Cabelte – Cabos Eléctricos e Telefónicos, S.A. - €1,020,800.00
  • Solidal – Condutores Eléctricos S.A. - €1,035,000.00
Summary of the case

The Portuguese Competition Authority (AdC) initiated ex-officio proceedings on 13.04.2021 against Cabelte Cabos Elétricos e Telefónicos, S.A. (Cabelte), Solidal Condutores Elétricos, S.A. (Solidal) e Quintas & Quintas Condutores Elétricos, S.A. (Q&Q), to investigate a possible infringement of Article 9 of Law n.º 19/2012 of 8 May (Portuguese Competition Act) and of Article 101 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU).

In order to establish the facts, under Article 17(2) and Article 18 of the Portuguese Competition Act, the AdC carried out inspections and sent requests for information to the entities concerned and third parties.

The behaviour occurred in the context of public procurement procedures launched by REN - Redes Energéticas Nacionais, SGPS, S.A. (REN) for the acquisition of electrical cables for Extra High Voltage (EHV) electricity transportation in the Portuguese national territory. The undertakings shared between them all the contracting procedures launched by REN for the supply of electricity transportation cables between June 2015 and May 2020.

The AdC concluded that the undertakings defined in advance who would win the procedures in an alternating manner, subcontracted the losing bidder and offset the invoicing in a scheme of regular payments and settlements, in the period mentioned before.

This conduct allowed the undertakings to share the market and to fix prices in the context of the contracting procedures for the acquisition of EHV cables.

On 10/02/2023, the AdC adopted a settlement decision, imposing Cabelte a fine of 1.020.800,00 EUR and Q&Q and Solidal a fine of 1.035.000,00 EUR, for participating in a cartel established for the supply of cables for electricity transportation, at least between June 2015 and May 2020.

The AdC has concluded the case in relation to all the undertakings due to their cooperation, since they decided to participate in a settlement procedure, admitting their participation in the cartel and renouncing to litigate in court. The fines imposed by the AdC were subject to a reduction in comparison to the those that would be imposed if the companies had not participated in the settlement procedure. The economic and financial situation of the target companies was also considered and also led to a reduction in the fines.

Click here to see your activities