Washington – The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) on Wednesday
agreed to settle its case against Silicon Valley chipmaker Intel (NASD: INTC), resolving charges
that the company illegally stifled competitors. Under the agreement, Intel will
be barred from using threats, bundled prices or other efforts against competing
makers of central processing units (CPUs), graphics processing units (GPUs) and
The deal specifically gives three companies — AMD, Nvidia and Via —
more freedom to consider mergers or joint ventures with other companies,
without the threat of being sued by Intel for patent infringement.
case demonstrates that the FTC is willing to challenge anticompetitive conduct
by even the most powerful companies," said FTC Chairman Jon Leibowitz.
"By accepting this settlement, we open the door to competition today and
address Intel’s anticompetitive conduct in a way that may not have been available
in a final judgment years from now."
The FTC sued Intel in December 2009,
alleging that the company used anticompetitive tactics to cut off rivals’
access to the marketplace.
"The settlement enables us to put an end to the
expense and distraction of the FTC litigation," said Doug Melamed, Intel’s
senior vice president and general counsel.