By: Nick Gambino
A few months ago the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), the UK’s antitrust body, ordered Meta to sell Giphy or else. It seems by owning the gif creation and distribution site (is that how you’d describe it?), CMA claims Facebook’s parent company edges out a competitive market.
Now the tech giant has finally found a buyer. After buying the gif platform for around $400 million just three years ago, Meta is selling Giphy for $53 million to Shutterstock. To be clear, that’s $53 million in cash at closing.
Even Meta’s acquisition wasn’t the most the company was ever worth. It had a $600 million evaluation in 2016, so $53 million is quite a drop in value. Some would argue that this is largely due to the younger generation not embracing the moving pic method of expression and even considering it cringe. Meta themselves made this argument when they were trying to defend themselves against a forced sale by CMA.
That said, there are apparently over 700 million daily Giphy users which suggests the kids don’t know what they’re talking about. And personally, I’m going to keep using gifs til the wheels fall off and the Tiktok generation ain’t gonna sway that one bit. It’s my version of yelling at clouds.
The acquisition will allow the stock image platform Shutterstock to add moving meme images to their library which should give it a boost thanks to Giphy being the most popular gif provider on the internet.
“Through the Giphy acquisition, we are extending our audience touch points beyond primarily professional marketing and advertising use cases and expanding into casual conversations,” Shutterstock CEO, Paul Hennessy, said in a press release. “Giphy enables everyday users to express themselves in memorable ways with gif and sticker content while also enabling brands to be a part of these casual conversations.”
Shutterstock doesn’t expect to make much money from Giphy in the first year but plans to figure out how to generate revenue from the new acquisition starting in 2024.