June 17, 2024

The UK’s Competitors and Markets Authority (CMA) has forged doubt on Adobe’s Figma acquisition, saying it “would seemingly cut back innovation.”

Figma offers web-based instruments that compete with Adobe’s product line at a fraction of the value. Adobe introduced in September 2022 that it had reached a deal to buy Figma for $20 billion. The transfer was instantly decried by designers and critics as a means for Adobe to kill off a competitor. Regulators within the EU and UK have been investigating the deal to see if it’s going to hurt competitors.

After reviewing the proposed acquisition, the CMA has issued a preliminary report, discovering that the deal would hurt the design sector.

Adobe and Figma are two of the world main suppliers of software program for app and net designers and our investigation up to now has discovered that they’re shut opponents.

This proposed deal, due to this fact, has the potential to impression the UK’s digital design business by decreasing selection, innovation and the event of recent aggressive merchandise.

As we speak’s resolution is provisional, and we’ll now seek the advice of on our findings and hearken to any additional views earlier than reaching a closing resolution.

The CMA discovered that Figma’s existence and competitors was fueling innovation at Adobe, innovation that might seemingly cease post-acquisition:

The inquiry group has additionally provisionally discovered that Figma is a reputable future competitor to Adobe in picture enhancing and illustration software program – and that the risk posed by Figma has pushed product improvement in Adobe’s Photoshop and Illustrator functions, together with new net variations. The inquiry group considers that if the deal went forward, it could get rid of Figma as a competitor which might in any other case have continued to hunt to develop its capabilities in picture enhancing and illustration, thereby fuelling innovation and product improvement by Adobe. This competitors could be misplaced on account of the transaction, harming designers and artistic companies who might need used these new instruments or relied on future updates.

The regulator will make a closing resolution by February 25, 2024. Within the meantime, involved events can present suggestions from now until December 19, 2023. The CMA is reserving the precise to take no matter motion it deems essential, together with blocking the deal fully.