Klarna-backed £1.8bn lawsuit fights Google search engine manipulation
Price comparison firm PriceRunner, which is in the process of being bought by Swedish fintech Klarna, said it was suing Alphabet-owned Google this morning for around €2.1bn (£1.8bn), after accusing the search engine for manipulating search results.
The lawsuit comes alongside a tide of legal action against Google in recent years. In November, the tech giant lost an appeal against a €2.42bn (£2.04bn) fine it received in 2017, which found using its own price comparison shopping service gave it an unfair advantage over smaller European rivals.
PriceRunner’s lawsuit aims to make Google pay out compensation for the profit lost by the company in the UK since 2008, as well as in Sweden and Denmark since 2013.
“They are still abusing the market to a very high extent and haven’t changed basically anything,” chief exec Mikael Lindahl of the Swedish PriceRunner told Reuters.
He added that the firm was prepared to fight for many years, securing tens of millions of euros in external financing to take the case forward.
A Google spokesperson has already said it would defend itself in court against the claims.
Just last week, Alphabet defied analyst expectations for quarterly revenue, hitting $75.33bn (£55.69bn). The results were largely thanks to the large online ad spend from many businesses in the run up to Christmas. Alphabet generates more revenue from online ads than any other company.