Google officially completes AdMob acquisition


Less than a week after the Federal Trade Commission unanimously approved its $750 million acquisition of mobile advertising network AdMob, Google announced the deal is officially complete. "We'll now begin the process of bringing our products and teams together in the best way, and building new products and features together," writes Google vice president of product management Susan Wojckicki on the Official Google Blog. "We're working to make this integration happen as fast and as seamlessly as possible. We'll actively keep our clients up-to-date as we bring our businesses together." With the completion of the deal, Google will turn to repurchasing in the open market a number of shares equal to the number issued in the transaction and issuable upon exercise of outstanding options to purchase AdMob common stock. Google will fund the repurchase via available working capital.

The FTC voted 5-0 to approve the Google/AdMob merger after determining the deal does not pose a threat to competition in the fast-growing mobile ad market, adding its initial antitrust concerns were overshadowed by recent developments in the mobile ad segment, most notably the forthcoming introduction of Apple's (NASDAQ:AAPL) iAd effort. The FTC noted that a number of other firms appear to be building or acquiring smartphone platforms to better compete with Google and Apple, contending these companies would have a strong incentive to facilitate competition among mobile ad networks.

"As a result of Apple's entry (into the market), AdMob's success to date on the iPhone platform is unlikely to be an accurate predictor of AdMob's competitive significance going forward, whether AdMob is owned by Google or not," said the FTC in a statement, adding, "Though we have determined not to take action today, the commission will continue to monitor the mobile marketplace to ensure a competitive environment and to protect the interests of consumers."

The FTC's decision came as a surprise given that The Wall Street Journal previously reported both Google and AdMob expected the agency to block the deal over antitrust concerns. Google CEO Eric Schmidt vowed the company would battle federal regulators if the AdMob deal was denied approval: "We're likely to fight very hard," Schmidt told Reuters last week. "It's a very strategic acquisition for Google."

For more on the completion of the Google/AdMob deal:
- read this Official Google Blog entry

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