Margrethe Vestager is temporarily stepping down as European Commissioner for Competition to campaign for a job as President of the Management Committee of the European Funding Bank.
Vestager said she’d been nominated for the contrivance by the Danish govt and requested unpaid leave for the campaign’s duration, a establish a query to granted by European President Ursula von der Leyen.
Vestager, whose term will end in 2024, will probably be replaced by Justice Commissioner Didier Reynders. The announcement of her transfer coincides with the designation of six gatekeepers – Alphabet, Amazon, Apple, Bytedance, Meta and Microsoft – beneath the Digital Markets Act (DMA).
Take a day out during the highs – and lows – of EU attempts to rein in grand tech
For the duration of her time as competition commissioner for the European Price, Vestager has been a thorn within the facet of many tech companies. Although her absence is temporary, we thought it appropriate to take a walk through some of her highlights – or lowlights, if you happen to have been on the unfriendly end of her team’s attention.
In 2019, Google was slapped with a €1.49 billion dazzling ($1.60 billion) over its enterprise practices. Vestager thundered: “Google abused its dominance to halt web pages the usage of brokers totally different than its maintain AdSense platform” before insisting she wasn’t singling out a success US tech companies for her ire.
The dazzling came after several years and more than one investigations into the search giant, which kicked off in 2015.
It wasn’t only Google who faced antitrust woes beneath the Danish chief over the years. Microsoft’s exploits have also advance in for attention. Most no longer too prolonged ago, the company’s practice of bundling Teams with Microsoft 365 has caused the European Price to launch a “formal investigation.” The $69 billion deal to acquire Activision Blizzard also attracted remark from Vestager.
As no longer too prolonged ago as June 2023, the Danish politician threatened to break up Google over its alleged ad monopoly.
Then there have been the antics of Amazon. The rate opted to take a nearer stare at the tech giant when it purchased complaints it was unfairly exploiting the enterprise data of third-party sellers. Or Apple, who came beneath scrutiny over its Apple Pay practices and tax arrangements.
The checklist continues, although Vestager also suffered some notable misses at some stage in her tenure. In 2022, an antitrust dazzling to the tune of nearly a billion euros against Qualcomm was nullified as a consequence of “procedural irregularities.” Intel overturned a similar penalty at the start of 2022.
- EU says dominant Google illegally alters search outcomes
- Qualcomm wins EU court battle against $1b antitrust dazzling
- Europe teases breaking up Google over ad monopoly
- Microsoft’s $69B deal to purchase Activision Blizzard beneath investigation by EU regulators
Ultimately, Vestager has been vocal in her calls for antitrust regulation within the EU and an undoubted irritant for grand tech companies. Must she reach her campaign for her fresh contrivance, her successor – Didier Reynders – has a busy time ahead of him. A variety of launch cases embrace investigations into Apple and Meta.
Tech giants hoping for an easier travel beneath the temporary chief may well no longer be reassured by his comments on his Twitter account: “I will continue to make obvious that EU competition policy & rules are vigorously enforced.” ®