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EU Extends Deadline On Facebook’s Kustomer Deal To Next Year

 |  August 25, 2021

EU antitrust regulators will decide on January 7 whether to clear Facebook’s purchase of US customer service startup Kustomer, a European Commission filing showed on Wednesday, August 25, extending the deadline for a second time after Facebook asked for more time.

The EU executive, which acts as the competition enforcer for the 27-country bloc, is investigating the deal on concerns that it may hurt competition and reinforce the US social media company’s power in online advertising, reported Reuters.

That could ratchet up the pressure on Facebook to offer concessions to address EU competition worries.

The UK competition watchdog is also investigating the acquisition while its German counterpart is checking to see if Facebook should also seek its approval.

Facebook, the world’s largest social network, announced the purchase of Kustomer to scale up its instant messaging app WhatsApp in November last year.

The EU executive, which acts as the bloc’s competition enforcer, said the deal may result in Facebook blocking rivals’ access to its units WhatsApp, Messenger, or Instagram, which are key to customer relationship management (CRM) software.

Kustomer sells CRM software to businesses so they can communicate with consumers by phone, email, text messages, WhatsApp, Instagram, and other channels.

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