Acquisitions by large digital platforms are all the rage. Competition authorities subject these deals to stricter scrutiny than before, but, in spite of this, Big Tech companies continue to expand their ecosystems by acquiring targets left and right. Google’s acquisition of Fitbit is illustrative on both counts. Introduction The acquisition was the latest in a series of more than 200 acquisitions by Google. Among the more well-known are Google’s acquisition of Android (2005), YouTube (2006) and DoubleClick (2008), an ad tech company. Until Google / Fitbit, all of Google’s acquisitions had either escaped merger review or had been cleared without conditions in the EU. The Commission’s decision in Google / Fitbit is the first merger decision that qualifies an acquisition by Google as
CASE COMMENTS: MERGERS - CLEARANCE - BEHAVIOURAL REMEDIES - DIGITAL PLATFORMS
Clearance: The European Commission clears the acquisition of a maker of fitness trackers and smartwatches by a major online platform, subject to long-lasting behavioural remedies (Fitbit / Google)
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