The UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has fined Facebook £ 50.5 million for violating an order issued by the authority in the investigation into its acquisition of the Giphy animated image creation and sharing service. According to Reuters, Facebook has stated that it does not agree with the CMA’s decision and will consider options for further action.
Facebook bought the Giphy service last May. In June, the CMA ordered that the U.S. company continue to compete with Giphy during the investigation of the transaction and not integrate it into its activities. However, according to the Authority, despite repeated warnings, Facebook did not provide the required information on compliance with this regulation.
“We warned Facebook that its refusal to provide us with important information was a violation of this regulation. But Facebook continued to ignore its legal obligations, even after failing its appeal in two different courts,” said Joel Bamford of the CMA. “It should serve as a warning to all companies that believe they are above the law,” he added.
Giphy runs a library of animated GIF images. Many Internet users use these images in social media posts. Facebook said last May that it intends to integrate the service into its social network for sharing Instagram photos.
The company did not disclose the financial conditions for taking over the Giphy service. However, according to earlier information from the Axios server, the value of the transaction was around $ 400 million (almost CZK 9 billion).