Canadian MPs monitoring Google DoubleClick
Politics Watch ® News Services
October 31, 2007, updated 5:20 p.m.
|Google's takeover of DoubleClick is being
monitored by Canadian politicians.
OTTAWA (PoliticsWatch.com) —
PoliticsWatch has learned Canadian politicians are monitoring the Google-DoubleClick merger.
"We're in fact looking at the issue now," Liberal MP Scott
Brison told PoliticsWatch after Wednesday's Liberal caucus
meeting on Parliament Hill.
"We're looking at what the Canadian impact may be," he said of
Google's $3.1-billion takeover of Web advertising provider
Brison sits on the Commons industry committee, which has the power
to hold hearings and call witnesses.
Critics of the merger say it will drastically reduce competition in the $27-billion a year Internet advertising business and would give Google undue control of the industry.
NDP MP Peggy Nash, who also sits on the Commons industry
committee, told PoliticsWatch that an examination of the Canadian
impact of the merger is "potentially something that the industry committee itself should take a look at."
"This may well be something that comes on our table," she
"Clearly it needs to be looked at given that analysts have called this basically cornering the Internet advertising
market. Any time you're controlling such a large chunk of a $27-billion industry it needs monitoring."
The deal is already being examined by Canadian regulators. As first
reported by PoliticsWatch, the Competition Bureau of Canada has
launched a review of the merger.
A spokesperson for the Competition Bureau told PoliticsWatch this
week that the review remains "ongoing." While the
Competition Bureau is accepting submissions from stakeholders it
does not hold public hearings.
The merger is coming under heavy scrutiny globally and is being
reviewed by other jurisdictions, including the U.S. Federal
Trade Commission and the European Commission.
Google has already cleared one regulatory hurdle after the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) announced Tuesday it will not intervene in
"In reaching its decision, the ACCC noted that Google and
DoubleClick are not close competitors in the provision of ad
serving," ACCC Chairman Graeme Samuel said in a
statement. "In this context, the ACCC considered that the merger was unlikely to result in a substantial lessening of competition in an Australian market."
Representatives from Google, industry players and analysts
have already appeared before a U.S. Senate subcommittee to air their
views on the merger.
An American tech news agency reported last week that sources at the U.S.
House Energy and Commerce and the House Judiciary Committees indicated separate hearings, or possibly a joint hearing,
may also take place on the merger.
In Europe, the European Commission recently extended the deadline
for its anti-trust review of the merger to November 13. Dow Jones
News has reported that the regulator has sent out a
questionnaire to the two companies' customers to verify whether clients believe there is a proper alternative to
Last week, the World Federation of Advertisers (WFA) submitted a letter to
the EC urging them to carefully consider the competition
implications of the merger.
"Global advertisers are keen to see this competitive marketplace maintained. It is hard to tell within such a rapidly changing marketplace what impact these proposed developments might have," WFA
managing director Stephan Loerke said.
© Politics Watch News Services 2007. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of Politics Watch content, including by framing, copying, linking or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Public Interests Research and Communications Inc (PIRCINC). Fees and charges may be applicable for the copying and or redistribution of Politics Watch content. Politics
Watch ® is registered trademark of PIRCINC.