EC will let Microhoo deal go on (probably)

Tue 18 August 2009 17:01, Bas van den Beld

EC will let Microhoo deal go on (probably)

In the US the FCC is looking into the Microsoft / Yahoo deal to see whether or not the deal is bad for competition. In Europe the EC (European Commission) is responsible for this area. They are said to be seeing no problems for letting the deal go through.

Clickz reports that the anti-trust scrutiny in the EC “has not been informed about the details of the transaction,” and that it “keeps this sector, as others, under review, but cannot comment further at this stage.” An insider however told Clickz there is a discussion going on between the Commission and Microsoft / Yahoo.

The European Union has to look into several details of the deal keeping in mind all the legal juristiction. Legal experts however don't expect any problems because in Europe Microsoft and Yahoo are not competitive enough compared to for example Google. They simply haven't got enough market share.

Douglas Lahnborg, Competition Partner at law firm Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe, said, “It is inconceivable that the deal would be blocked by the Commission. I don’t see what competition arguments could be raised against it given the parties’ limited market position. Any investigation will be a formality.”

So how will Google feel about this? One the one hand they will be smiling because their market share is so big the EU doesn't see a combination of their two biggest rivals to be a thread, on the other hand Google might feel Microhoo is getting through to easily. Rumours are Google will be trying to let the EC look into it a little further and make Microsoft and Yahoo work for it.

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