Google ITA negotiations with DOJ coming to a head

February 25, 2011: 12:40 PM ET

A deal could be just days away, but insiders warn it could all unravel.

Companies lined up against Google's acquisition of ITA

Politico reports that Google (GOOG) and the Department of Justice could be "just days away" from an agreement for the search giant to acquire ITA Flight pricing and scheduling software.  But negotiations are getting tense and the deal could unravel at any moment.

Google announced its intentions to purchase ITA in July for $700 million.

Among conditions on the table are possible provisions under which Google would license ITA software to rivals and others aimed at easing industry concerns that Google will use its search dominance to unfairly disadvantage rivals in the online travel business.

A coalition of flight booking companies have banded together to oppose the deal in a coalition called Fairsearch.org.  The group contends that a Google-ITA merger would stifle competition in the online flight purchasing industry.

As part of its defense, Google has noted that Expedia, Travelocity or Priceline, the top three travel sites, doen't even use ITA software. Videos published by both sides, below:


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Seth Weintraub
Seth Weintraub

Google went from searching the Web to worming its way into nearly every facet of business and government. Seth Weintraub unveils where the company is going, who it's competing with, who it's about to compete with and how market forces push the company to veer or adhere to its Don't Be Evil motto. For 15 years, Weintraub was a global IT director for a number of companies before becoming a blogger.

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