Today, we learn that the Department of Justice was just 3 hours away from filing antitrust charges against Google:
“We were going to file the complaint at a certain time during the day,” says Litvack, who rejoins Hogan & Hartson today. “We told them we were going to file the complaint at that time of day. Three hours before, they told us they were abandoning the agreement.”
“It would have ended up also alleging that Google had a monopoly and that [the advertising pact] would have furthered their monopoly,” Litvack says.
Interesting, huh? The DoJ really did believe that a mere ad partnership was enough to tip Google into the realm of being a monopoly.
Going forward, we may well hear Google cite economic conditions or a “focus on core” products as a reason for not making any large acquisitions. However, now we know that the very next big deal Google signs, will likely come with a multi-million dollar war-chest to fight a likely DoJ charge.