The antitrust case that Google faces in Europe may have its end in sight. Earlier this year, it was revealed that the European Commission would file antitrust charges against the company five years after the investigation started. Now, Bloomberg has reported that Google has been told to expect large fines.
Google fines large enough to act as deterrent
According to the report,the fine would be “large enough to act as a deterrent” for the US company, and could be based on the AdWords revenue from European users, as well as having to make changes to the way its shopping services are displayed.
The fines are to be levied after Google and the commission tried to settle the investigation three times in the past, while other companies asked the EU to investigate Google for its anticompetitive practices. A settlement is of course still possible between Google and the European Union, but it seems increasingly unlikely.
The European Commission “intends to set the fine at a level which will be sufficient to ensure deterrence,” the EU regulator said in the document. The regulator “considers that, based on the facts described in this statement of objections, Google committed the infringement intentionally or, at the very least, negligently.”
Some of the claims against the search giant are that it has scrapped content from its competitors for use on its services, displaying its own services more prominently, and abusing its power like a monopoly. And earlier this month, Google even admitted that it hasn’t been clear in its efforts to European users and that it would work to repair its reputation.