Macmillan, also doing business as Holtzbrinck Publishers, has reached “an agreement in principle” with 33 states, including Texas to settle allegations that the book company manipulated prices in the E-book market.
Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott today announced the allegations included collusion with other major publishers and Apple, Inc. to influence and control prices.
“Unlawful collusion and price-fixing not only violates antitrust laws, it is anti-competitive and inconsistent with the free market approach that is critical to our economy,” Abbott said.
“Today’s agreement with Macmillan provides refunds to customers who paid artificially inflated prices for E-books and prohibits Macmillan from colluding with other publishers and undermining retail price competition in the E-book market.”
The agreement with Macmillan must be approved by the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.
When the agreement is finalized E-book outlets will gain greater freedom to reduce the prices of their E-book titles.
“Consumers nationwide, including those represented by the attorneys general of the 33 states and those represented by private counsel in a related class action, will receive $20 million in compensation,” Abbott’s office stated.
Texas customers comprise nearly eight percent of E-book purchasers nationwide.