Facebook and the Giphy platform used a legalized but controversial method to make the social media acquisition go unidentified — and perhaps even barred — by US regulators.
According to a Bloomberg report, the method used is legalized, but it explores a possible loophole in antitrust laws that must now be better evaluated by institutions. Giphy’s tactic was to pay dividends to shareholders moments before Facebook’s purchase.
As a result, the market valuation of the animated GIF service has been lowered — to the point where it falls short of $94 million in valuation, the minimum necessary for authorities to be alerted. If that happened, both parties would have to fill out a series of documents and undergo assessments by bodies such as the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the US Department of Justice.
What can happen?
The original complaint was filed now in August 2021 and, at worst, could cause Facebook to resell Giphy — Mark Zuckerberg’s network is also under similar pressure from Instagram and WhatsApp purchases. At the time of the transaction, in May 2020, it was speculated that the move involved US$400 million.