Shutterstock to Acquire Giphy From Meta for $53 Million

Shutterstock to Acquire Giphy From Meta for $53 Million

Shutterstock plans to acquire Giphy from Meta Platforms for $53 million.

The announcement comes seven months after Meta said it would sell Giphy, which it bought for $315 million in 2020 following an order from the United Kingdom’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).

Shutterstock has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Giphy, and the transaction is expected to close in June, subject to customary closing conditions, the company said in a Tuesday (May 23) press release.

Giphy, which maintains a library of GIFs and stickers that can be shared on social media and team collaboration platforms, will complement Shutterstock’s global platform for licensing content, according to the release.

“This is an exciting next step in Shutterstock’s journey as an end-to-end creative platform,” Shutterstock CEO Paul Hennessy said in the release. “Shutterstock is in the business of helping people and brands tell their stories. Through the Giphy acquisition, we are extending our audience touch points beyond primarily professional marketing and advertising use cases and expanding into casual conversations.”

The combination will enable new custom content solutions for brands and advertisers and tap into the growing total addressable market (TAM) for native advertising as brands seek to connect with customers via mobile phones and communications tools, according to the release.

“We plan to leverage Shutterstock’s unique capabilities in content and metadata monetization, generative [artificial intelligence (AI)], studio production and creative automation to enable the commercialization of our GIF library as we roll this offering out to customers,” Hennessy said in the release.

Meta’s said in October that it would sell Giphy, as it accepted the CMA ruling as final.

The CMA said Oct. 18 that it had “found that Meta’s takeover of Giphy could allow Meta to limit other social media platforms’ access to GIFs, making those sites less attractive to users and less competitive.”

The authority also found that the deal took Giphy out of the running as a potential challenger in the British display advertising market.

Meta, which was still known as Facebook when it acquired Giphy in May 2020, said at the time that combining Facebook-owned Instagram and Giphy would make it easier for people to find GIFs and stickers.