Google Is Merging Its Two European Divisions In Face Of Stricter EU Rules

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Google’s European business divisions had been split into two geographic regions, but the company is joining the two pieces into one European business. Google has hit a rough patch in the EU with anti-trust issues and citizen’s rights to be forgotten from Google searches. Google right now has a northwest European division, and a separate south/east business. Matt Brittin is the current head of the north/west division and will be heading the newly joined pieces. The person running the south/east division in Europe, Carlo D’Asaro Biondo, is going to take a new role where he’ll be handling Google’s relationship with some commercial partners.

Brittin says that putting the two geographic pieces of Google’s business will enable the company to better handle the challenges it faces on a local level and on a larger level across Europe. There is competition from Bing and Yahoo, as well as companies like Twitter and Facebook, and that’s not even taking into account the legal trouble Google has been facing from the EU. “Just talking with publishers the other day, many get most of their traffic from Facebook or Twitter, not from Google,” Brittin told the Financial Times. “We’re in a world where the dynamics and competition is speeding up.”

“You can’t always be unconventional,” said industry analyst Richard Holway. “This is part of Google growing up. It’s adopting the same sort of corporate structure that has been tried and tested in Europe.” Google initially split the company into two divisions in order to create competition between departments. It wasn’t a solid market strategy and it’s not working the way the company planned. “It was always a strange set up in the past,” said Luca Paderni, an analyst at Forrester Research. “It was an internal organisational decision, rather than market strategy.” Google will still face challenges and it will have to work hard to overcome them. This newly joined European division should help things move more smoothly, and it certainly helps to gather strength for any upcoming EU law battles.