The Act 3/2013, of June 4, creating the National Commission on Markets and Competition (CNMC) of Spain, includes among the functions of the institution the drafting of studies and research on competition matters, as well as general reports on different economic sectors (Article 5.1.h)). The Board of CNMC has taken advantage of this prerogative to commence a study on the conditions of competition in the online advertising sector.
This study is part of Strategic Action 6.2 of the CNMC’s 2019 Action Plan (analysis of new sectors arising from digitisation or those sectors where new digital technologies have disrupted traditional business models).
Why is the CNMC preparing a study on the online advertising sector?
Advertising is a very relevant element for consumers in all markets, given its informative and persuasive dimensions. Online advertising means a disruption through its greater capacity for targetability, together with a better measurement and monitoring of its effects. This raises important implications in terms of competition, sparking the interest of Competition Authorities and international organizations.
The study aims to characterize the online advertising sector, with a specific focus on Spain, including a legal and economic context. Based on this description, the study will include an analysis of the conditions of competition and of market conduct by undertakings. Finally, some conclusions will be drawn.
How will the CNMC carry out its study on online advertising?
The study starts with this phase of public consultation, which intends to collect the views of the main stakeholders engaged in this sector. These include digital platforms (such as search engines, social networks or content aggregators whose primary source of revenue is online advertising), advertisers, agencies, regulators, consumers and other experts and concerned agents.
The next stage will consist in the analysis of the received contributions, as well as contacts (through both meetings and eventual information requirements) with some of these agents related to the sector. These tasks will be simultaneous with the internal elaboration of the study, which the CNMC expects to complete in a period of 6-9 months.
Rules of participation in the public consultation
This public consultation is transparent and the contributions received will be taken into consideration for drafting the study. Contact information (e-mail) remains confidential and will not be published in any circumstance. Confidential treatment may be given to the name of the individual or the institution responsible for the contribution if required. Nonetheless, the answers may be published in full, unless otherwise specified and duly justified for confidentiality issues of some information.
It is only mandatory to answer the fields marked with an asterisk (*). The rest of the questions are optional to answer, so agents willing to contribute to the consultation are invited to focus their response on those sections where they have relevant information. Questions where appropriate information or judgment is lacked can be left unanswered or with the DK/NO option (“don’t know/no opinion”.
In open questions, a maximum allowed extended length is required in order to ensure a concise response. References or links to publicly available documentation can be included. If transmit additional information is to be submitted (such as data, contract terms, etc.), an electronic file (pdf, excel, word, etc.) can be sent to the e-mail address firstname.lastname@example.org using the subject "Study on online advertising" (stating clearly whether the provided documentation can be disclosed with the answer to the public consultation).