Adobe's $20 billion (nearly Rs. 1,65,550 crore) bid for cloud-based designer platform Figma could reduce competition in global markets for interactive product design tools and also shut out rivals, EU antitrust regulators said on Monday.
The European Commission said it opened a full-scale investigation into the deal after a preliminary review triggered concerns, confirming a Reuters story last month.
Tech deals have recently drawn sharp antitrust regulatory scrutiny amid fears that some bigger companies may be acquiring rival start-ups to shut them down.
Figma's web-based collaborative platform for designs and brainstorming is popular among tech companies including Zoom Video Communications, Airbnb and Coinbase.
The deal would remove an important rival and could allow Photoshop maker Adobe to restrict competition in the global markets for supply of interactive product design tools, the EU antitrust watchdog said.
It said the acquisition could also affect Figma's potential for growth into an effective competitor to Adobe's asset creation tools and effectively reduce competition in interactive product design tools by bundling Figma with Adobe's Creative Cloud suite.
"With our in-depth investigation we aim to ensure that users continue to have access to a wide pool of digital creative tools to choose from," European Commissioner for Competition Margrethe Vestager said in a statement.
Adobe said it has received overwhelmingly positive feedback on the deal from customers worldwide.
"We remain confident in the merits of the case as Figma's product design is an adjacency to Adobe's core creative products and Adobe has no meaningful plans to compete in the product design space," the company said in a statement.
"We look forward to establishing these facts in the next phase of the process and successfully completing the transaction."
The EU competition enforcer said it would decide by December 14 whether to clear or block the deal.
© Thomson Reuters 2023
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