Google must face $17 billion UK ad tech lawsuit

A UK court has ruled that Google must face a £13.6 billion ($17 billion) lawsuit alleging it wields too much power over the online advertising market.

Why we care. The case could have far-reaching implications for the digital ad industry. Will this lead to advertisers spending less on Google?

Driving the news. The Competition Appeal Tribunal in London rejected Google’s attempt to dismiss the case, allowing it to proceed to trial.

The lawsuit, brought by Ad Tech Collective Action LLP, claims Google’s anticompetitive practices have cost UK online publishers money.

It alleges Google engages in “self-preferencing,” promoting its own products over rivals.

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Google’s response. The tech giant calls the lawsuit “speculative and opportunistic,” vowing to “oppose it vigorously and on the facts.”

Context. This is just one of many regulatory challenges Google faces:

Multiple probes, including the U.S. vs. Google antitrust trial

Billions in fines from the EU for anticompetitive behaviour

What’s next? No trial date is set yet. The case has already taken 18 months to reach this stage.