On 29 April The French Competition Authority (FCA) published its report on the Fintech sector (available here, in French). This report follows its payment sector inquiry launched in January 2020, which primarily focused on the disruption brought by new technologies and new market players.
In this report the Authority points to the arrival of large BigTech platforms in the payments sector (Apple Pay, Google Pay, Amazon Pay in particular) leveraging their position to gain considerable advantages, such as :
Big Tech companies also have the ability to make significant profits as they are not subject to the regulatory constraints faced by traditional banking players, and bank card groups which facilitate the payment.
According to the FCA, these advantages could give rise to major competition concerns in the field of payment services. Currently no enforcement action has been officially announced. but the FCA will be vigilant with regard to the following risks:
The FCA's opinion may add to the debate at the European level on the regulation of payments and new technologies in general - in particular the Digital Market Act and the Commission's ongoing antitrust probe into Apple Pay announced last summer.
For more information, you can find a more detailed summary of the FCA's opinion here.
By Thomas Oster, Scott McInnes, Shane Barber, Ivan Sagál, Annette Printz Nielsen, Kristiina Lehvilä, Cathie-Rosalie Joly, Dr. Michael Jünemann, Konrad Siegler, Stefano Febbi, Slawomir Szepietowski, Kim Kit Ow, José Luis Lorente Howell, Hans Svensson, Trystan Tether, Gregory Man, Michelle Chan