The DMA regulation targets only companies that are considered “gatekeepers” at the entrance to the Internet, gate guards (The doormen) from Internet. These are the players that have a strong influence on the internal market, and represent an important entry point for user companies to reach their customers and maintain or maintain a solid and sustainable position in the near future. It does not matter whether it was founded in Europe or anywhere else in the world.
They are assumed to be access controllers, within the meaning of the new European legislation, companies that:
- Providing one or more core platform services in at least three European countries;
- You have a very high turnover or market valuation: at least €7.5 billion in annual sales volume in Europe in the last three years or €75 billion or more in market capitalization in the past year;
- Significant number of users registered in the EU: over 45 million Europeans per month and 10,000 professionals per year for the past 3 years.
Companies that reach these specific thresholds will have to identify themselves to the European Commission, which will formally designate them as access controllers. If this is not possible, or if the companies do not cooperate in market investigations, the committee may appoint them unilaterally.
It may also designate access control companies that do not meet all of these thresholds but are considered to be very controlling, depending on certain criteria (platform size, barriers to entry, etc.).
The companies involved will be able to appeal their appointment.
The same company may be assigned as a gatekeeper for several core platform services (eg a search engine and virtual assistant).
List of access controllers And the List of basic platform services that they provide . will be published By the Commission and reviewed at least every three years.
SMEs – except in exceptional cases – are exempted from the qualification of the access controller. The category of Emerging Access Controller is also planned, in order to impose certain obligations on companies whose competitive position has been demonstrated but not yet sustainable.
An advisory committee and a group of digital experts will assist the European Commission in its work. National competition authorities, for their part, will be able to investigate potential violations of the DMA rules and report their findings to the Commission.
To oversee the DMA, the European Commissioner for the Internal Market, Thierry Breton, hopes to recruit 100 to 120 people. At the end of June 2022, 18 organisations, including the European Consumer Unions Bureau (Beuc) and the Edri lobby for digital freedoms, asked the European Parliament for a sufficient budget to provide the human and technical resources needed to implement the regulation.