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CRS – Mergers and Acquisitions in Digital Markets

Mergers and Acquisitions in Digital Markets, March 30, 2021: “Some Members of Congress have expressed concern about mergers and acquisitions in digital markets, specifically those involving “Big Tech”—Alphabet (Google), Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Microsoft. Mergers can be separated into three categories: (1) a merger between competitors (i.e., horizontal merger), (2) a merger with a firm in the supply chain (i.e., vertical merger), and (3) a merger with a firm in an unrelated or adjacent market. Some Members have specifically raised concern about Big Tech companies’ acquisitions of nascent firms, which can occur across all three categories. A merger could potentially increase or decrease competition in digital markets, depending on the characteristics of the markets involved…Any legislative action, including a decision not to take action, could have significant effects on digital markets. Congress is not the only legislative body concerned about competition in digital markets; stateand foreign laws and regulations could also affect mergers involving U.S. companies..”

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