Facebook, the world’s most popular social network, will win unconditional EU regulatory approval for its $19 billion offer for mobile messaging startup WhatsApp, the largest deal in its 10-year history, according to “two people familiar with the matter.”
“It’s unconditional clearance,” one of the people said, declining to be named because the decision by the European Commission is not yet public.
We’ve already seen the full impact of standalone Facebook Messenger on the markets at large, and from these reports, it looks like we’ll start to see how WhatsApp’s pairing with Facebook will tip competition in favor of the social network. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg says WhatsApp could hit 3 billion users, giving it access to the largest ever user pool on Earth.
WhatsApp could give Facebook access to 3 billion users
Despite the unprecidented amount of control it would have, Facebook had apparently managed to convince the European Commission that the deal had no anti-competitive effect and therefore concessions were not necessary. The final deccision won’t be made until October 3.
The United States FTC approved the deal back in April on the condition that WhatsApp not use users’ personal data for targeted ads; it has to stick with its current privacy practices.
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