Interview Transcript

If you were in the regulators office today and looking at this problem, what sort of actions would you be taking today and going forward?

Fines don’t work. All they do is they delay everything. The most practical and clear cut action, as I said, is that I think Google need to be, not broken up, but in the case of travel, Google Flights needs to be sold off. I think it has a huge conflict with the entire industry in that it has an unnatural and unfair advantage in its access to the Google Search funnel and that gives it an unfair advantage over the rest of the world.

I think Google Flights on its own could be a very valid product, it’s a great product, there’s no argument that it’s an inferior product now, they’ve done a great job. But, I think it’s got an unnatural advantage and that unnatural advantage is being used to abuse the search monopoly and the android monopoly.

I think the easiest, clear cut and effective change would be to force a divestiture of Google Flights. That would be a great starting point because that will immediately prevent Google from extracting a tax from the entire airline industry at the cost of not just the airlines but also OTA’s. That’d be a great start. Even that signal alone would put Google on a footing that they would be very careful about replicating similar moves in any other vertical. For me, it’s the easiest one to do, it’s short of an entire break up but it would certainly cure what might be the future for the next ten years.

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