• Conflict over water, coal

    SA's leaders have upped their support of the water-intensive coal industry, says Keith Schneider.

  • Cost of doing business

    The world can't afford the $4.7trn a year in environmental costs of business, says Mandi Smallhorne.

  • Voter paralysis

    With so much tilting voters against change, democratic reason is the loser, says Solly Moeng.

All data is delayed
See More

Appeal Court rules in favour of Netstar

Apr 02 2012 17:44
I-Net Bridge
Johannesburg - The Supreme Court of Appeal has dismissed, with costs, applications of both the Competition Commission and Tracetec against Altech Netstar.

The ruling comes in the wake of a protracted legal battle between the Competition Commission and Altech Netstar following a complaint of anti-competitive behaviour by Tracetec against Altech Netstar in February 2005.

The alleged anti-competitive behaviour related to the period between 1999 and 2003 when Altech Netstar accepted the Vehicle Security Association's (VESA's) invitation to become a member of a VESA sub-committee which suggested minimum standards for vehicle tracking systems by insurance companies.

In April 2010 the Competition Tribunal issued a declaratory order that Altech Netstar had contravened the Competition Act.

Altech Netstar subsequently appealed the ruling as it believed the tribunal had erred on a number of its findings, and that Altech Netstar had not contravened the Competition Act and was not guilty of anti-competitive behaviour.

In February 2011 the Competition Appeal Court set aside the Competition Tribunal's finding and dismissed the finding with costs.

In April 2011 the Competition Commission took the ruling by the Competition Tribunal on appeal and approached the Supreme Court of Appeal. The application was subsequently dismissed with costs by the Supreme Court of Appeal.

According to Altech CEO Craig Venter, the finding by the Supreme Court of Appeal supports Altech Netstar's view that it was never in contravention of the Competition Act, nor did it engage in anti-competitive behaviour.

"From the outset, when Tracetec first lodged its complaint with the Competition Commission in 2005 and when the Commission Tribunal found Altech Netstar guilty of contravening the Competition Act in 2010, we have been of the opinion that the finding was flawed.

"Despite our subsequent successful appeal in the Competition Appeal Court of South Africa against the Competition Tribunal ruling and the Appeal Court setting aside the tribunal's findings, the Competition Commission insisted on taking the matter to the Supreme Court of Appeal," he said.

"The dismissal of the Competition Commission's appeal by the judges of the Supreme Court of Appeal, with costs, vindicates our view that the Competition Commission was wrong and should never have continued with this wasteful and expensive process.

"The fact that several million rand in legal costs have been awarded in favour of Altech Netstar, after tax, is a clear indication of our innocence in this matter," he concluded.

Altech Netstar MD Harry Louw said: "We are pleased that this matter has finally been settled. Altech Netstar does not engage in anti-competitive practices and this decision ends the negative and erroneous perception that this long legal battle has caused to our good name.

"The ruling by the Supreme Court of Appeal of South Africa finally concludes this matter as there are no more avenues for the Competition Commission or Tracetec to explore."


Read Fin24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Company Snapshot

We're talking about:


Debt is one of the biggest financial issues facing South Africans today. Find out how you can avoid and manage your debt with Fin24 and Debt Rescue.

Money Clinic

Money Clinic
Do you have a question about your finances? We'll get an expert opinion.
Click here...

Voting Booth

The upcoming petrol price hike is:

Previous results · Suggest a vote