Google is reportedly looking to spin off its shopping service into a separate unit following a hefty and record €2.42 billion fine (about $2.7 billion) from the European Union. A new report from Bloomberg tells us that Google will be complying with the EU’s ruling by separating Google Shopping service into its own separate business.
Google Shopping will remain under the main Google brand but will be its own standalone business. The business will “operate separately and use its own revenues to bid for ads.” Seven years ago, Google Shopping became a target by the EU and will now have to pay this hefty fine.
The EU investigation found that when users searched for products to buy in Google Shopping, the company displayed its own links and products first before showing competitors. This gave Google an unfair advantage. Bloomberg reported that the company fixed this by letting rivals bid against Google Shopping.
EU competition commissioner Margrethe Vestager said Google had “abused its market dominance as a search engine by promoting its own comparison shopping service in its search results, and demoting those of competitors.” In addition, the company has been ordered to change its business to comply with “the simply principle of giving equal treatment to [rivals].”
Google plans to unveil its full plan on Thursday, but competitors argue that these changes don’t go far enough to make a dent or a proper change for that matter.