What you need to know
- The UK Competition and Markets Authority has released its preliminary findings into its investigation of Facebook's Giphy acquisition.
- It says the deal raises competition issues.
- The body says it might make Facebook sell Giphy.
Facebook could be forced to sell Giphy on the back of findings made by the UK's Competition and Markets Authority.
The body announced its findings today stating:
According to the release the CMA has "provisionally" found the Facebook's takeover of Giphy "will negatively impact competition between social media platforms", it explains:
The body is concerned the deal could see it deny other platforms access to its GIFs or change the terms of the access, making platforms like Twitter and Snapchat hand over more user data to keep using the product. The CMA also notes that Giphy's own paid advertising was in competition with Facebook and that buying up the company may have removed a market competitor for Facebook. Similar concerns were raised by the company's deals for WhatsApp and Instagram. The inquiry chair Stuart McIntosh said "Millions of people share GIFs every day with friends, family, and colleagues, and this number continues to grow. Giphy's takeover could see Facebook withdrawing GIFs from competing platforms or requiring more user data in order to access them. It also removes a potential challenger to Facebook in the £5.5 billion display advertising market. None of this would be good news for customers."
Facebook announced plans to buy Giphy in May of 2020 in a deal reportedly worth $400 million.
Other interested parties now have until September 2 to respond, and possible remedies must be submitted by August 25. A final report will be issued on October 6.
Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design.
Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9
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