The country’s General Superintendence at the Administrative Council for Economic Defense, or CADE, said the Dec. 1 raids in 8 Brazilian counties in 4 states was to “investigate alleged cartel in the Brazilian market of orthotics and prosthetics,” according to a Google translation of a CADE press release.
“There are suspicions that some manufacturers and distributors act in collusion to participate in public bids for the acquisition of implantable medical devices and possibly on private purchases of hospital networks and health plans,” according to the release. “The investigated pipelines may involve combinations of competitors in tenders, market divisions and pricing.”
The probe is based on analysis of bidding data and allegations from bidders agencies and private purchasers and an analysis of Brazil’s Court of Audit.
CADE did not reveal the names of any of the companies or distributors raided in the investigation. The name of the operation, “Merchant of Venice,” refers to the Shakespeare play in which the title character, a loan shark, demands a pound of flesh as payment for a bad debt, the agency said.