EU says is a gatekeeper under DMA rules

This means that Europe’s most popular holiday accommodation booking service will now join the ranks of Alphabet, Amazon, Apple, ByteDance, Meta and Microsoft.

Booking, the popular online service that helps travellers find accommodation, will now have to face stricter EU competition rules after being designated as a gatekeeper.

According to the Digital Markets Act (DMA) adopted in 2022, a gatekeeper is a company that has had an annual turnover in Europe of at least €7.5bn in the last three years or market value of at least €75bn in its last financial year with operations in at least three member states.

In an announcement today (13 May), the European Commission said that Booking, the parent company of, is a core platform service that “meets the relevant thresholds” for being an “important gateway” between businesses and consumers.

“The DMA aims to ensure contestable and fair markets in the digital sector,” the commission wrote. “It regulates gatekeepers, which are large digital platforms that provide an important gateway between business users and consumers, whose position can grant them the power to act as bottlenecks in the digital economy.”

Margrethe Vestager, the EU’s competition chief, hailed the move as “good news” for holidaymakers in the EU, who will start benefitting from “more choice” and hotels will have “more business opportunities”.

“Booking is an important player in the European tourism ecosystem and is now also a designated gatekeeper,” added Thierry Breton, internal market commissioner.

“We will work to make sure it will fully comply with the DMA obligations within six months. The DMA proves again to be a powerful but flexible tool to identify and regulate companies that are real gatekeepers.”

The commission has also opened a market investigation into X, formerly Twitter, to assess a rebuttal first submitted in early March that argued that despite meeting thresholds for being a gatekeeper, X does not qualify as an important gateway between businesses and consumers.

The investigation is expected to be completed in five months.

Meanwhile, X Ads and TikTok Ads have dodged being designated as gatekeepers, as the commission found the core platform services do not qualify as important gateways. Just last month, it listed Apple’s iPad operating system – iPadOS – as a gatekeeper.

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