United Kingdom

On behalf of the team

On 14 June 2022, the CAT rendered a judgment in the case between Meta Platforms, Inc. (“Meta”) and the Competition and Markets Authority (“CMA”).[1] In December 2021 Meta launched an appeal against the CMA’s decision that Meta’s acquisition of Giphy Inc. (“Giphy”) would lead to a substantial lessening of competition.[2] Following an in-depth investigation, the CMA had found that Meta’s purchase of Giphy would reduce competition between social media platforms and had already removed Giphy as a potential challenger in the display advertising market in the UK. The CMA’s decision required Meta to sell Giphy to a purchaser approved by the CMA.

In its judgment on the case, the Tribunal upheld the CMA’s decision on 5 of the 6 challenged grounds. More specific, the Tribunal stated “we have no hesitation in concluding that the decision made by the CMA was one that it was entitled to make”. Thus was concluded that the merger between Meta and Giphy substantially reduced dynamic competition.

[1] Competition Appeal Tribunal, 14 June 2022, Case 1429/4/12/21 (Meta Platforms Inc/CMA).

[2] Initial enforcement order CMA, 9 June 2020.