Turkish competition authority launches probe into chips magnate of Lays, Doritos over anti-competitive practices

The Turkish Competition Authority launched an investigation into Frito Lay, a subsidiary of PepsiCo, over suspicions indicating that the chips magnate or its distributors may be involved in obstructing rivals’ sales to outlets purchasing packaged chips from the company.

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The Turkish Competition Authority has launched an investigation into Frito Lay Gıda Sanayi ve Ticaret A.Ş over suspicions of violating competition regulations, the regulatory body announced on May 13.

Frito Lay is a prominent player in Turkey’s packaged chips industry with popular brands such as Lays, Ruffles, Doritos, Cheetos, and Çerezza.

Prompted by a preliminary inquiry in February, the investigation concerns suspicions that Frito Lay or its distributors may have been engaging in practices to obstruct rivals’ sales to outlets that procure packaged chips from the PepsiCo subsidiary.

Allegations include halting competitors’ operations in outlets like groceries and kiosks, limiting the visibility of rival products in stores, and removing stands featuring competing chips from shelves.

Additionally, there are claims of verbal agreements with final outlets on exclusivity arrangements.

This is not the first time Frito Lay has come under scrutiny from the Turkish Competition Authority.  In late 2022, the company was involved in a cartel-forming scheme, resulting in a fine of nearly 88 million TL.

Prior to that, Frito Lay was fined nearly 18 million TL for a competition violation in 2013.

(English version by Wouter Massink)