Last updated: June 13, 2023, 5:44 PM IST
(Reuters) – The European Union’s antitrust regulators may direct Alphabet Inc’s Google to sell part of its ad technology business, a source with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters on Monday.
The EU’s main antitrust watchdog, the European Commission, could file a formal complaint against Google as early as Wednesday, the source said, further intensifying transatlantic efforts to reduce the tech giant’s dominance in digital advertising.
In 2022, the Commission launched an investigation into Google’s extensive presence at almost all levels of the online display advertising supply chain, raising concerns about its dominant position.
Termination orders from the EU competition enforcer are rare. However, frustration is mounting after Google’s failure to resolve the competition concerns, the source said.
The Commission and Google did not immediately respond to Reuters’ requests for comment.
According to research firm Insider Intelligence, Google is the most dominant digital advertising platform in the world with a market share of 28% of global advertising revenue.
First-quarter ad revenue at Alphabet fell to $54.55 billion from a year earlier, but beat what analysts had expected. Parent company Google’s total revenue was $69.79 billion during that period.
Google’s dominance in online advertising has been increasingly questioned in recent years. Complaints from rivals about his alleged anti-competitive practices have led to multi-continent antitrust investigations into his practices.
Earlier this year, the United States filed an ad technology lawsuit against Google demanding the sale of its ad management package. Google has denied any allegations.
The likely move by the EU was first reported by the Wall Street Journal on Monday.
(Additional reporting by Nilutpal Timsina and Akriti Sharma; editing by Maju Samuel and Rashmi Aich)
(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and was published from a syndicated news agency feed – Reuters)