HRS loses rate parity appeal, calls for unified approach
A German court has ruled parity clauses from hotel specialist HRS are anti-competitive, paving the way for similar decisions on other online intermediaries.
The ruling from the Higher Regional Court Dusseldorf dismisses an appeal from HRS of a decision made by Bundeskartellamt, the German Federal Cartel Office, more than a year ago.
The cartel office decision was based on “most favoured nation” or MFN clauses whereby HRS partners could not offer cheaper rates anywhere other than via the hotel booking giant.
Regulators also concluded that these clauses breached both German and European competition law and since March last year HRS has not been allowed to include the clause in contracts with hotels in Germany.