European Commission Google

Google is spread far and wide. From hardware to software to services, it’s given its wares all across the world from Australia and Hong Kong to Russia and Europe. It’s those latter two places that the legal systems there have cases against the Mountain View behemoth. Specifically, a competing search engine company in Russia and the European Commission.

Enter Alphabet, Inc., the new holding company that holds Google. It has just addressed the EU’s regulatory arm with a 130-page response to antitrust charges. It has been redacted to protect trade secrets.

In it, Alphabet claims the EU resolved such anti-trust issues against Google three times — the same number of times the EU attempted to settle with Google.

Alphabet is arguing out to a limb that Google could prioritize its own services in its search results and still be compliant with competition regulations. It also has grievance with the EU suddenly demanding more concessions from Google in addition to ones made in January 2014. Those sudden demands, Alphabet claims, were made without proper justification.

Financial damages could tally up to $66 billion, that’s 10 percent of the company’s 2014 revenue. The impairments these charges would impose on Google would also “demand that [the company] sacrifice quality to subsidize competitors.”

The EU is taking its time with this case, though some complainants hope for a decision by early next year. Google could appeal an unfavorable ruling, but appeals typically take more than five years to move through the system.

Source: Wall Street Journal

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