Law firm Edwin Coe LLP has filed a group action seeking damages from a group of commercial vehicle manufacturers on behalf of direct and indirect truck buyers who were victims of a price fixing cartel.
The manufacturers were fined nearly €3 billion by the European Union on July 2016, and the Road Haulage Association has already launched a compensation claim on behalf of its members.
Edwin Coe says it is able to act for companies who used trucking services provided by hauliers, as well as truck buyers. It is encouraging additional businesses in the retail, construction, farming, waste-management and outsourcing sectors to sign up to the action.
It said that a number of well-known high street names, a supermarket retailer and a range of major regional brewers, are already among the claimants joining the litigation. They are seeking damages (plus interest) for medium or heavy goods vehicles purchased during the so-called infringement period of 14 years.
Zahira Hussain of Edwin Coe said: “This cartel was an EU-wide scandal for many years and affected thousands of UK businesses from PLCs to smaller enterprises. Companies that believe they were a victim and want to claim their rightful compensation need to act fast. There is still a window to join our claim process on a cost and risk-free basis.”
The claim stems from a European Commission ruling in 2016 against five truck manufacturers – MAN, Volvo/Renault, Daimler/Mercedes, Iveco and DAF – which found they operated a price fixing cartel stretching back to 1997. There has since been a similar finding against a sixth manufacturer, Scania. Together these manufacturers hold over 80 per cent of the market.