General Court dismisses Google’s appeal of the Google Shopping Decision

The General Court has today dismissed Google’s appeal of the European Commission’s Google Shopping Decision from June 2017 and has upheld the EUR 2.42 billion fine imposed on Google – a record fine at the time.

The General Court agreed with the European Commission’s finding (in its vast majority) that Google abused its dominant position by favouring its own comparison shopping service over competing comparison shopping services. The General Court ruled out any objective justification for Google’s conduct and found that Google had acted intentionally and not negligently.

This is the first time that the EU’s courts have considered whether Google’s conduct complies with European competition laws – and the answer here is an emphatic ‘no’. The judgment is great news both for those who attempt to compete with Google’s myriad products and for the millions of consumers who are impacted by Google’s stranglehold over markets that depend on Google Search. 

The contribution made by many of the interveners supporting the European Commission – including Hausfeld’s clients (Foundem, VDZ, BDZV and Visual Meta) – assisted the Court in its finding against Google. Our UK and German teams are currently reviewing the decision and will share what it may mean going forward.

The General Court's press release.

The case has been reported widely:

Financial Times (subscription only)
GCR (subscription only) (subscription only)