I must admit, international anti-trust law is not one of my strengths, so perhaps someone could explain to me how the merger of two U.S. companies could come under the rule of the European Union?
BEUC, backed by consumers in Germany, Italy and Spain, has urged the competition commissioner Neelie Kroes to investigate the deal, arguing in a letter seen by the Guardian that it “may have a negative impact on the selection of online content available to consumers and on privacy”. The US federal trade commission is already investigating on similar grounds.
If Ms Kroes finds that the deal is in breach of European regulations, she could quash the takeover or force Google to divest large parts of its business.
So, I get that Google is dominant in Europe and has operations there, but does it make sense that the deal could be effected by the grumblings of a few European countries – especially when you consider that Europe’s not exactly in love with Google.