Google faces billions of dollars in damages in Europe

Google is facing claims for damages of up to 25 billion euros ($25.4 billion) in UK and Dutch courts. The lawsuits are filed for its digital advertising practices. Google’s astech recently came to the attention of antitrust regulators following complaints from publishers

Last year, the French competition authority imposed a fine of 220 million euros on Google. The European Commission and its UK counterpart have begun investigating whether Google’s adtech business gives it an unfair advantage over rivals.

“It’s time for Google to face up to its responsibilities and repay the damages it has caused to this important industry. That’s why today we’re announcing these actions in two jurisdictions to seek compensation for publishers in the EU and the UK,” said Damien Geradin. Geradin Partners said in a statement on Tuesday.

Google has expressed dissatisfaction with the impending lawsuits. He said he was working constructively with publishers across Europe. The company called the lawsuit ‘speculative’

“This lawsuit is speculative and opportunistic. When we receive the complaint, we will fight it vigorously,” a spokesperson said.

The UK application to the UK Competition Appeal Tribunal will seek compensation for all website owners running banner advertising, including traditional publishers. Britain has an opt-out regime.

The Dutch complaint is open to publishers affected by Google’s actions. Funder Harbor is funding both lawsuits.

(With agency contributions)

Mary I. Bruner