FTC will continue to investigate Google/Apple relationship

Another board member that serves both Google and Apple is coming into question.

The FTC says that it will continue to investigate the Google/Apple relationship even though today Apple announced that Google CEO Eric Schmidt was leaving Apple's board.

The FTC press release says:

"On August 3, 2009, Apple announced that Eric E. Schmidt, Chief Executive Officer of Google, was stepping down from its board. 'We have been investigating the Google/Apple interlocking directorates issue for some time and commend them for recognizing that sharing directors raises competitive issues, as Google and Apple increasingly compete with each other,' said Bureau of Competition Director Richard Feinstein. 'We will continue to investigate remaining interlocking directorates between the companies.'”

As John Paczkowski of the Digital Daily writes. There's still a couple more interlocking directors that need to be cleaned up including a board member that sits on both Google and Apple. He writes:

In other words, Schmidt’s departure was a nice start, but the Commission still worries that Google (GOOG) director Arthur Levinson’s presence on Apple’s (AAPL) board–as well as that of Google advisers Bill Campbell and Al Gore–might lead to conflicts of interest or unfair business practices.


Copyright © 2009 IDG Communications, Inc.

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