ACCC: Google's DoubleClick acquisition can go ahead

The Commission has decided that the planned acquisition is unlikely to negatively affect competition.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) announced yesterday that it will not intervene in Google's proposed acquisition of DoubleClick.

Google sells advertising space on its own websites as well as on third party websites and owns the leading internet search engine in Australia. DoubleClick develops software that allows publishers and advertisers to display, or 'serve', graphical advertisements onto websites.

ACCC Chairman Graeme Samuel, said the commission has carefully considered the likely effects of the proposed transaction on the Australian online advertising industry.

"A key focus of the ACCC's investigation was whether the combination of Google's network of website publishers and DoubleClick's ad serving capabilities would enable the merged entity to increase the cost of ad serving to website publishers and advertisers," he said.

"In reaching its decision, the ACCC noted that Google and DoubleClick are not close competitors in the provision of ad serving. In addition, the ACCC also took into account the presence of other competitors in this market that would be likely to constrain the merged entity post-merger."

In this context, the ACCC considered that the merger was unlikely to lessen competition in an Australian market.

A Public Competition Assessment of this matter will be available at www.accc.gov.au/mergers

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