UK antitrust watchdog to investigate Facebook acquisition of Giphy

The United Kingdom Competition and Markets Authority, the UKs antitrust watchdog, has begun an investigation into Facebook's acquisition of Giphy.

The deal is valued at around $400 million, and under scrutiny for possibly reducing competition in the United Kingdom.

Facebook is already facing antitrust concerns, and criticism for Mark Zuckerberg's decision to not challenge false posts and comments that incite violence by impeached U.S. President Donald Trump.

From reporting by Reuters on Friday:

The parent of messaging app WhatsApp bought Giphy, a popular website for making and sharing animated images, or GIFs, in May to integrate it with its rapidly growing photo-sharing app, Instagram.

While a formal probe is yet to begin, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) earlier this week served Facebook with an initial enforcement order and on Friday began the first stage of an investigation, inviting comments on the transaction from any interested party. (

Facebook, the world's largest social media network, did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment.

Giphy sought to quell some of the concerns in a statement. "Everyone will continue to have the same access to GIPHY. We look forward to demonstrating how this partnership is a win for our users, partners, and content creators," it said.

Read more at Reuters:
Facebook's Giphy deal draws UK competition watchdog's attention