EU watchdog threatens to break up Google into smaller companies

Margrethe Vestager has her sights set on Google again
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Margrethe Vestager

Margrethe Vestager

The European Union’s competition watchdog has renewed threats to break up Google into smaller companies.

EU competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager told the Telegraph that she still harbours ‘grave suspicions’ about the search giant. As a result, the EU is looking into wether or not Google needs to be broken up into a series of smaller companies on anti trust grounds. Vestager claims that splitting up Google is the only option to prevent it from becoming too large to challenge in the market without disrupting the economy.

Vestager has had previous success against Google, after leading the campaign against the US tech firm for manipulating online shopping markets, that led to Google being served a record $2.7 billion.

“I think it important to keep that question open and on the agenda,” Vestager said. “We are not there yet but it is important to keep an awakened eye.”

She added: “There is no ban on success in Europe. You get to be dominant and you get a special responsibility that you don’t destroy the already weakened competition... We have proven their dominance in search and we have found they have misused this dominance to promote themselves and diminish competitors.”

Vestager also seemed concerned that Google is still abusing its market position, which is nearly 92 per cent of the entire search industry in the EU, to bully competitors out of business despite the fine. In recent interviews, she’s said EU officials will be carefully monitoring its compliance reports and that other related investigations into the Play Store and its AdSense business are ongoing. 

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