Paris Court of Appeal overturns Google abuse of dominance ruling

The Paris Court of Appeal dismissed Evermaps (previously Bottin Cartographes) damage claim in its proceedings against Google France and Google Inc. in relation with the alleged predatory pricing by Google of its mapping service Google Maps API. This service, which allows companies to embed maps on their website, is proposed under a “freemium” model where companies can either choose an upgraded paid version or a free version of Google Maps.

This judgment reverses a judgement from Paris Commercial Court delivered in January 2012. The Paris Court of Appeal followed the December 2014 opinion of the French Competition Authority according to which Google did not pursue a predatory or exclusionary strategy by offering a free version of Google Maps API.

CRA provided economic support to Google throughout the proceedings and presented detailed economic analysis to show that Google’s pricing of its Maps API service was neither predatory nor exclusionary. CRA’s economic analysis is frequently referred to in the opinion of the French Competition Authority upon which relies the judgement of the Paris Court of Appeal. The judgement clarifies the role of common costs in the assessment of predatory conduct.

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