A US technology company has paid £6 billion for the largest online marketplace for online searches, including search engine results, a major milestone in the development of a business model that could one day become the dominant online search marketplace in the world.
The transaction, which has been formally disclosed by the Department of Commerce on Wednesday, is the biggest ever for a global online search company and marks a major leap in terms of scale for Google, the world leader in search.
“Today’s announcement is a significant milestone for the development and growth of the business,” said David Drummond, deputy secretary of commerce in the White House, at a press conference.
“The acquisition of Google is one of the largest ever for the company and, as the world becomes increasingly connected through search, we expect the company to become a dominant online business in the future.”
The deal has been signed off by the US Department of Justice, which is the US government agency responsible for antitrust enforcement.
The deal will see Google invest $5.5 billion in British-based online search startup AdSense and create up to 10,000 jobs, the company said.
The US investment will be used to create a search engine that has “robust and differentiated product offerings that consumers will enjoy” and that will “help drive search traffic”, it said.
Google also agreed to “develop a strategic alliance with British search engine Bing that will enable us to grow our business and expand our operations in the UK”.
Bing currently has a 50% share of the market for search in the US, while AdSense has around 8% and Bing around 2%.
The deal is expected to generate a combined total value of $15.5bn for Google and the US authorities.
Google said it expects to “continue to invest in the business, improve our products and services, and accelerate its growth” to support the growth of its business.
It also said it was “proud to join the United States government in its efforts to bring online search to the entire world”.
“We are excited about the opportunity to continue to build an ecosystem for people around the world that will be more inclusive and useful to consumers,” said Andrew Hickey, Google’s senior vice president of business development, in a statement.
The acquisition was approved by the Justice Department on Thursday.
The companies said they were also looking at opportunities in other parts of the world and would look at further opportunities in the near future.
The deal marks another major milestone for Google in the United Kingdom.
In 2014, Google bought the business of UK search engine and internet service provider SearchEngineLand, which operated the popular British site SearchEngineNexus, for a reported $1.5 trillion.
Google bought out the rest of the company in a $1bn deal.
Google has previously been in talks with the British government to expand its online search services in the country, which are dominated by the company’s parent company Alphabet.
The company is expected in the next few months to launch an advertising service in the U.K., Google said.