European Commission approval clears way for Google’s acquisition of DoubleClick

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Mountain View, Calif.—Google gained approval Tuesday from the European Commission for its $3.1 billion acquisition of Internet ad server DoubleClick.

The approval was the last hurdle Google needed to clear to close the deal; the U.S. Federal Trade Commission gave its approval in December.

The approval came despite the claims of some industry observers that the deal could present potential conflicts of interest for Google in its relationship with marketers. Rivals Microsoft and Yahoo also expressed concern when the deal was first announced almost a year ago.

Commenting on the deal at Google’s annual press day Tuesday in New York, Eileen Naughton, the company’s director, media platforms, said: “I see it as a green field opportunity and a whole new area of innovation that combines display ads with content [ads].”

Penry Price, VP-advertising sales, North America at Google, added: “There’s a big world of brand and display dollars we haven’t taken advantage of. We’ll work together with them [to do so.]”

He said an important aspect of the acquisition is that it will enable Google to build additional tools and technology for advertisers on top of the DoubleClick ad serving platform.

—Carol Krol

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