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Australia Plans New Facebook Probe Over Giphy Deal

 |  June 8, 2020

Facebook claims it has nothing to hide from the Australian competition regulator, which has launched an investigation into the social media giant’s acquisition of Giphy, a library of video clips and animated images known as GIFs.

Facebook acquired Giphy for a reported US$400 million last month, but the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) chairman Rod Sims said on Monday, June 8, that the regulator could take legal action against Facebook if it uncovered concerns with the deal.

“This is not just any old GIF supplier, it’s the biggest, most important one and given that, we were surprised that we weren’t notified by Facebook of this acquisition,” he said. “If, when we look at it, we do have concerns, then we obviously need to take court action.”

Facebook stated it was ready to fully cooperate with the investigation. “We are prepared to show regulators that this acquisition is positive for consumers, developers, and content creators alike,” a spokesperson for Facebook said. “Developers and API [application program interface] partners will continue to have the same access to Giphy, and Giphy’s creative community will still be able to create great content.”