Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) has responded to the threat of a hefty fine from antitrust regulators. The company claims that the case is unfair especially because of the unique nature plus the fact that Alphabet was willing to settle in 2014.
The company replied to the charge sheet issued by the European regulators with a statement claiming that the regulators were treating the firm in an unfair manner. The statement specifically stated that the European Commission failed to recognize the fact that Alphabet’s search service is offered on a free basis.
The company jumped on a strong defensive when the EU brought forth accusations that Google had programmed search results to favor its shopping service, thus competing unfairly with its rivals. Google’s outburst is against a hefty fine of $6.6 billion that that the Commission set as the amount to be paid by Google if a guilty verdict is delivered.
Documents retrieved by Reuters record Google stating that there are no grounds for sanctions. It would, therefore, be unfair and inappropriate for the Commission to impose fines. The document points to Google’s compliance and good faith by taking part in the negotiations as reason enough to warrant against a fine. Google feels that it should not be facing charges for claims that it is abusing its superiority in Europe when its services are offered freely.
Google claims that according to case law, there has to be a ‘trading relationship,’ over which the concerned part can claim abuse of dominance. The company argues that it should not be subjected to any fine because there is no ‘trading relationship’ with users. The European Commission’s spokesman, Ricardo Cardoso did not comment about the defense brought forward by Google.
Google’s document also condemned the antitrust enforcers for failing to explain why they failed to provide reasons for declining the third concessions that were provided at the beginning of the year. The commission has provided a one month window for third parties to give their input before it can reach a final decision on the case. Google is eagerly waiting to see how the case turns out especially now that it has a strong defense on its side.
Sources: TheVerge, Reuters