The U.K. Competition and Markets Authority announced on Friday that it opened an investigation into Facebook’s planned acquisition of customer interaction platform Kustomer.
Facebook announced the purchase in November last year, saying it hopes Kustomer’s integration will improve customer interactions with businesses it hosts on its platform.
Privacy advocates have raised concerns about the deal in February. “We fear that Kustomer has intimate data about people, and we want to know what Facebook will do with it,” the Irish Council for Civil Liberties wrote in a statement.
The CMA will investigate whether the deal can lead to a “substantial lessening of competition” in U.K. markets and has until September 27 to decide whether to open an in-depth investigation.
“We look forward to progressing with the CMA review,” Facebook said in a statement. “The transaction is pro-competitive and will bring more innovation to businesses and consumers in the dynamic and competitive CRM space.”
The acquisition, which would likely not have attracted much attention from competition authorities a few years ago, is now under intense scrutiny as political pressure rises to contain the growing market power of big tech platforms.
The U.S. Federal Trade Commission opened an in-depth investigation into the deal in February; the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission started its own review in March; and the European Commission began one in May. EU officials have until Monday to open a second phase of their probe. The German competition authority last week announced that it may initiate its own parallel probe into the transaction.