PriceRunner sues Google for 2.1 billion euros, prepares for long fight

PriceRunner, a Swedish pricing comparison site, announced on Monday that it was suing Alphabet’s (GOOGL.O) Google for approximately 2.1 billion euros ($2.4 billion), making it the latest company to sue Google for allegedly manipulating search results.

Google lost its appeal in November against a 2.42 billion euro fine it received in 2017 after it was deemed that utilizing its own price comparison shopping tool gave it an unfair advantage over smaller European competitors.

“They are still abusing the market to a very high extent and haven’t changed basically anything,” PriceRunner Chief Executive Mikael Lindahl told Reuters in an interview.

PriceRunner, which is being acquired by Swedish fintech Klarna, said it filed a case in Sweden to force Google to compensate it for profits lost in the United Kingdom since 2008, as well as in Sweden and Denmark since 2013.

According to a Google spokeswoman, the corporation will fight the complaint in court.

“The modifications we made to shopping ads back in 2017 are working well… PriceRunner elected not to utilize shopping ads on Google, so it’s possible they haven’t had the same success as others,” a Google spokeswoman said.

PriceRunner, according to Lindahl, was prepared to battle for many years, had obtained tens of millions of euros in outside funding, and had contingencies in place in the event it did not succeed.

The Commission discovered that Google offered its own comparison shopping service high placement in its search results while demoting other comparison shopping services.

“For many years, European consumers have been denied meaningful choice in purchasing services, and this is one step toward guaranteeing that this is no longer the case,” a Klarna representative stated.

In November, Klarna agreed to buy PriceRunner from Creades (CREADa.ST), a Swedish investment firm, for 1.06 billion Swedish crowns ($124.36 million).

The transaction is likely to finalize in the first quarter of this year. The price comparison shopping service of Axel Springer In 2019, Idealo sued Google for 500 million euros.