Facebook Inc. Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg and Alphabet Inc. CEO Sundar Pichai are willing to testify before a congressional panel investigating competition issues in the technology industry, Bloomberg News reports, citing “two people familiar with the matter.”
Apple Inc. hasn’t guaranteed it would make Tim Cook available to the House antitrust panel, said the people, who asked not to be named describing the talks. Amazon.com Inc. has already said it would send Jeff Bezos to testify “at a hearing with the other CEOs this summer.”
The commitments to send Zuckerberg and Pichai, which the companies have relayed to the panel, were conditioned on appearances by the other CEOs, the people said… A spokesman for Representative David Cicilline, the Rhode Island Democrat leading the probe, declined to comment…
Apple’s position — that it will send an appropriate executive, without promising Cook — mirrors Amazon’s earlier reluctance to send its chief and could provoke a clash between the company and the lawmakers taking part in the probe. In Amazon’s case, Cicilline repeatedly threatened to subpoena Bezos, although the company ultimately backed down and agreed to send him voluntarily.
Cicilline may want to hear from the CEOs soon: He has said he wants to include their testimony in a final report that would propose changes to antitrust law. He has said the investigation and report are close to being finished.
MacDailyNews Note: If Tim Cook does go to the Hill to testify before a congressional panel, it’ll be a return visit as he testified in May 2013 before the Senate Permanent Committee on Investigations about corporate taxes.