In the wake of Amazon's purchase of streaming powerhouse Twitch, a new report suggests Google — thought to be an early contender for the buyout — backed out of the deal following concerns over antitrust issues, according to Forbes.
This refers to a competition law developed to regulate anti-competitive conduct by companies. Google is already the owner of YouTube, a site that competes with Twitch to broadcast and stream live and on-demand gaming sessions. Sources close to Forbes also state neither Google nor Twitch could come to an agreement on the size of a break-up fee in case the deal did not go through.
While it was never publicly confirmed that Google aimed to purchase the streaming company, numerous publications suggest the deal was underway with a $1 billion price tag. Comparatively, Amazon finalized its purchase of Twitch for $970 million. In 2006 Google acquired YouTube for $1.65 billion.
"Twitch has built a platform that brings together tens of millions of people who watch billions of minutes of games each month—from The International, to breaking the world record for Mario, to gaming conferences like E3," said Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos in a press release. "Like Twitch, we obsess over customers and like to think differently, and we look forward to learning from them and helping them move even faster to build new services for the gaming community."
Twitch was launched in June 2011 by Justin.tv co-founders Justin Kan and Emmett Shear and focuses on live video game streams and eSports broadcasting, though the company has started to expand its live offerings beyond video games. Twitch boasts more than 55 million visitors per month and topped 1 million monthly broadcasters earlier this year.