Google is hit with a record breaking fine for distorting internet search results in favour of its own shopping channel. David Doyle reports.
The biggest fine ever given to a single company in an antitrust case. Google slapped with the 2.42 billion euro punishment on Tuesday (June 27) for distorting internet search results in favour of its own shopping channel. That's 2.7 billion U.S. dollars That penalty imposed by the European Commission, which has given the tech giant 90 days to end the anti-competititive practice. The fine is equivalent to 3 percent of Google's 2016 worldwide revenues and is more than double the previous record breaker of 1.06 billion euros, imposed on U.S. chipmaker Intel in 2009. The European Commission says that if the practice does not stop it could face further punishment of up to five per cent of Google parent Alphabet's daily global turnover. The fine, a result of a seven-year investigation prompted by scores of complaints from Google rivals such as Yelp and Tripadvisor. The European Commission says Google acted illegally under EU antitrust rules. SOUNDBITE (English) EUROPEAN COMPETITION COMMISSIONER, MARGRETHE VESTAGER, SAYING: "It has denied other companies the chance to compete on the merits and to innovate and, most importantly, it has denied European consumers the benefits of competition, genuine choice and innovation." But this won't be the end of Google's tussle with the Commission. There are two other ongoing cases: Google accused of using its Android mobile operating system to crush rivals, and of blocking rivals in online search advertising. On Tuesday Google said it disagreed with the European Commission decision and was considering an appeal.