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Shutterstock, an online stock photo marketplace, has agreed to buy GIPHY from Meta Platforms in a deal valued at $53m.

GIPHY, a platform for animated images that are widely used in messaging apps, was acquired by Meta in 2020.

The following year, UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) ordered Meta to sell GIPHY over concerns that the deal would reduce competition.

As per Reuters’ report, Meta paid around $400m for GIPHY’s acquisition.

For Shutterstock, the acquisition is expected to expand its content library and bolsters its generative AI and metadata strategy.

GIPHY is claimed to have the world’s largest collection of animated images more commonly known as GIFs and stickers.

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Besides Meta, its content is available across other social media platforms including TikTok, Twitter and Snapchat and business collaboration tools such as Slack and Microsoft Teams

Furthermore, the platform is integrated into most mobile devices, noted Shutterstock.

Top verified media partners including Disney, NBA, NBC, Netflix, the NFL and MLB, as well as individual artists contribute content to GIPHY’s content library.

Shutterstock CEO Paul Hennessy said: “Through the GIPHY acquisition, we are extending our audience touch points beyond primarily professional marketing and advertising use cases and expanding into casual conversations.

“We plan to leverage Shutterstock’s unique capabilities in content and metadata monetization, generative AI, studio production and creative automation to enable the commercialisation of our GIF library as we roll this offering out to customers.”

Subject to customary closing conditions, the transaction is expected to close in June 2023.