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Injunction for breach of competition law refused


On Friday 8 March 2024 Mr Justice Trower refused an application for an interim injunction – heard inter partes – brought by Ants Energy Ltd against Epex Spot SE.

EPEX Spot SE run one of the two spot markets for intra-day and day-ahead electricity trading in the United Kingdom. Ants Energy applied to become a member of the exchange but – following a careful review – that application was refused.

Ants Energy issued a Claim Form and Particulars of Claim alleging various breaches of the Competition Act 1998 (abuse of the Chapter I and Chapter II Prohibitions) and made a separate application seeking injunctive relief that would have required EPEX Spot to reconsider their application. Ants Energy claimed that the application was urgent because, if not admitted to the exchange, they would shortly lose their authorization from Ofcom under the Balancing and Settlement Code (which would expire due to inactivity).

Mr Justice Trower gave an extempore judgment in which he rejected the application. He found that the Claim Form and Particulars of Claim did not disclose a serious issue to be tried and, in any event, the balance of convenience lay in favour of refusing relief.  

Tim Johnston appeared on behalf of EPEX Spot (instructed by their in-house legal team).