A source with direct knowledge of the situation provided Reuters with information on Monday suggesting that antitrust authorities in the European Union may require Google, which is owned by Alphabet Inc., to sell a portion of its advertising-technology business.
According to the source, the European Commission, which is the main antitrust watchdog in the European Union, might submit a formal complaint against Google as early as Wednesday. This would further increase efforts being made on both sides of the Atlantic to reduce the tech giant’s dominance in digital advertising.
Concerned about Google’s dominating position in the market for online display advertising, the Commission opened an inquiry into the company in 2022 to look into its pervasive presence at practically every level of the supply chain for online advertising.
Google’s advertising-technology company may be sold by EU antitrust regulators.
It is not very often that the EU competition enforcer will issue a break-up order. According to the insider, though, growing discontent might be attributed to Google’s failure to address issues over the company’s competitors.
Comments were not immediately met with a response from either the Commission or Google.
According to data carried out by Insider Intelligence, Google has established itself as the preeminent digital advertising platform everywhere in the world, commanding a market share of 28% of total worldwide advertising income.
Alphabet’s advertising revenue for the first quarter decreased from the same period a year earlier to $54.55 billion, yet this figure was more than what industry analysts had anticipated. The Google parent company reported a total revenue of $69.79 billion for the period in question.
Over the past few years, there has been a growing body of evidence that calls into doubt Google’s position as the dominant player in internet advertising. Complaints from competitors regarding its purportedly anti-competitive business activities have resulted in antitrust investigations involving such practices being conducted on different continents as a result of the complaints.
The United States government filed a lawsuit against Google in January of this year alleging that the search engine illegally misused its dominant position in the internet advertising market. The complaint demanded that Google sell its ad management suite and stated that the search firm illegally abused its position. Google has said that it did nothing improper.
On Monday, the Wall Street Journal was the first publication to reveal what appears to be the next step for the EU.