The British competition authority is also looking at the Adobe-Figma business

The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) on Wednesday announced, that it is scrutinizing software company Adobe’s $20 billion bid to acquire cloud-based design platform Figma to determine whether the deal would distort market competition. The CMA wants to conclude the first phase of the investigation by June 30, and then decide whether to move on to the second, in-depth phase of the investigation after the evaluation and the formulation of the main concerns.

Adobe previously told Reuters it was in talks with US, UK and EU regulators and still expected to close the deal this year. By the way, the British competition authority has busy days, putting the Figma deal on its to-do list after it blocked the Microsoft-Activision acquisition last week because, according to its concerns, the deal would have a distorting effect on the market for cloud-based games.


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The authorities are watching the efforts of big tech giants to acquire smaller, innovative rivals and their possible consequences on the competitive market with an increasingly attentive eye. The European Union announced in February that it would review the Adobe-Figma agreement. The Photoshop owner originally sought approval from the antitrust authorities in Austria and Germany, after which Austria took the case to the European Commission, which was joined by nearly a dozen other EU countries. According to the commission, the transaction carries with it the risk of distorting competition in the market for interactive product design software, so Adobe cannot close the deal until the commission has approved it.

The US Department of Justice (DoJ) is also preparing to sue to block the deal, although there are no confirmed news or dates for this yet. Previously, in our article analyzing the deal in more detail, we wrote: whether the US Trade Commission (FTC) allows Adobe to take over Figma will be a sharp test of whether the US authorities have learned any special lessons from previous mergers and what they will do next. with the technology industry being concentrated in the hands of a few large players. If the deal goes through without a bone, it will clearly show that technology companies still do not have much to fear from regulators – beyond the manageable, occasional fines.

Last September, Adobe announced that it would acquire the startup Figma, founded in 2011, for a gigantic sum of twenty billion dollars, whose product design tool, released five years later, has become a favorite of mobile application and web designers over the years, and also a competitor of the Adobe XD software. This is by far the largest acquisition deal in Adobe’s history, previously the acquisition of Marketo in 2018 held the top with its purchase price of 4.75 billion dollars. This was preceded by the acquisition of Macromedia in 2005, which was then worth 3.4 billion dollars.

Figma, which is used by well-known, large partners such as Microsoft, Zoom, AirBnb or Coinbase, among others, will enjoy full autonomy within Adobe based on a preliminary agreement between the companies, and its CEO will remain Dylan Field, who with his partner , founded the company with Evan Wallace ten years ago, during their studies at Brown University. For the time being, the acquisition does not affect Figma’s product range, so the system will remain free for educational use, as promised, and the pricing will not change either.

Source: HWSW Informatikai Hírmagazin by

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