Japan’s Fair Trade Commission has given its approval to a partnership that allows Yahoo Japan to use Google search results. According to Reuters, Japan’s FTC has promised to monitor the alliance for possible violations of the country’s anti-monopoly laws.
Yahoo Japan, which is controlled by Softbank with Yahoo Inc. as a minor owner, announced in July that it would use Google’s search results instead of Yahoo’s (and then Bing’s when that partnership was implemented over the summer). Days later, Microsoft announced its intention to challenge the Google-Yahoo Japan deal. As a minority owner, Yahoo Inc. wasn’t able to block the agreement.
Depending on what measurement stats you look at, the deal means Google and Yahoo Japan now control somewhere in the neighborhood of 95% to 98% of the search market in Japan.