Google has been fined by its French competition for €220 million for abusing its position in online advertising and favoring its services to the disadvantage of its publishers and competitors.
All the investigation started into Google’s unfair digital advertising practices after News Corp Inc, Le Figaro group and the Rossel La Voix group, filed a complaint against Google.
As per the French regulator, Google favored its Google Ad Manager tech that is utilized to operate the DFP ad server and the SSP AdX sales platform. This platform actually allow publishers to sell ad space on their sites and auction impressions to advertisers.
In against of this, Google did not dispute the allegations and settled the antirust case by agreeing to pay the fine and promising to, “improve the interoperability of Google Ad Manager services with third-party ad server and advertising space sales platform solutions and end provisions that favour Google.”
In regard of this, the president of France’s competition regulator, Isabelle de Silva said, “These very serious practices penalised competition in the emerging online advertising market, and allowed Google not only to maintain but also to increase its dominant position.”
He also added, “This sanction and these commitments will make it possible to re-establish a level playing field for all players, and the ability for publishers to make the most of their advertising space.”
So, Google has simply responded to €220 million fine by saying it will increase access to data, flexibility and transparency.
The Legal Director at Google France said, “While we believe we offer valuable services and compete on the merits, we are committed to working proactively with regulators everywhere to make improvements to our products.”
“That’s why, as part of an overall resolution of the FCA’s investigation, we have agreed on a set of commitments to make it easier for publishers to make use of data and use our tools with other ad technologies.”
“We will be testing and developing these changes over the coming months before rolling them out more broadly, including some globally.”
So, the French competition authority accepted Google’s commitments making them binding as part of its decision in the case, and the complaint is withdrawl.