The $20-billion acquisition of design startup Figma Inc. by Adobe Inc. is reportedly set to undergo a rigorous review by the European Union’s merger regulators, intensifying the global examination of a deal that Adobe’s CEO has labeled as “game-changing”.
Adobe has chosen not to suggest solutions to potential competition issues, leading to an impending comprehensive investigation by the EU’s competition division, as per sources familiar with the situation contacted by Bloomberg.
Adobe’s $20B Bet: Figma Acquisition Under EU’s Lens
The phase two investigations typically extend the review process by approximately 90 working days. While regulators often require remedies to address competition concerns, they may also grant unconditional approval if initial apprehensions prove to be baseless.
The acquisition represents a significant wager on the increasing shift of creative work to the web by small businesses and everyday users, a market that Figma has swiftly captured. Despite Adobe’s introduction of more affordable, simplified products for this demographic, the majority of its offerings remain robust programs designed for professionals.
An Adobe spokesperson stated that the company is maintaining “constructive dialogues with regulatory authorities globally.” Figma has yet to comment on the matter.
Global Regulatory Scrutiny Intensifies
Adobe, a longstanding leader in creative software, is also under the microscope in the United States, with the U.S. Justice Department reportedly preparing an antitrust lawsuit to halt the merger.
The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority had previously announced a prolonged review on July 13 after Adobe failed to propose remedies for antitrust concerns. The authority is expected to release its findings by Dec. 27.
The deal coincides with Adobe’s integration of generative AI features across its product range. Last month, the company launched enterprise-level subscriptions for these new tools, which include protection against copyright claims. Adobe has also increased its revenue forecast for its Digital Media unit, which encompasses Photoshop and other creative software.
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