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Google Closes $2.6B Deal For Looker Data Sciences 

Alphabet-owned Google said on Thursday (Feb. 13) it completed a deal to acquire privately-held data analytics firm Looker Data Sciences for $2.6 billion after winning clearance from Britain’s competition watchdog, according to reports.

A review by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) said the deal would not increase prices or stifle competition. The acquisition has also been approved by the U.S. Department of Justice and the Austrian Federal Competition Authority.

“Although Google had the ability to make it difficult for rivals to access the Google-generated data they need from online advertising and web analytics services, there was no strong evidence they would have the incentive to do this,” the CMA found.

“As part of its assessment, the CMA examined a wide range of evidence including thousands of internal documents detailing the companies’ strategic plans, and submissions from a large number of customers and competitors,” the CMA said.

“Together, we’re excited to offer customers a comprehensive analytics solution that integrates and visualizes insights at every layer of their business,” said Thomas Kurian, chief executive of Google Cloud, in a blog post announcing the acquisition. “As more organizations adopt a multi-cloud strategy, Looker customers and partners can expect continued support of all cloud data management systems like Amazon Redshift, Azure SQL, Snowflake, Oracle, Microsoft SQL Server and Teradata.” 

He added that customers would retain “complete control of their data.”

Google faces off against the EU in court in Luxembourg this week over a €2.4 billion fine for allegedly promoting its shopping search engine at the expense of smaller rivals.

The search giant’s Fitbit deal is also facing regulatory challenges in Europe and the U.S. over how it will handle stored health data from the 28 million users.

Google announced in June that it was buying data analytics company Looker for $2.6 billion. Looker was founded in Santa Cruz, California in 2012. It has about 800 employees and has raised $281 million in venture capital. In 2018, it was valued at $1.6 billion.

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