Commission launches probe of Apples bid for Shazam

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The European Commission on Monday opened an investigation of Apples takeover of British music startup Shazam.

The probe comes after the Commission said earlier this year it would either approve or investigate the deal by today, after receiving requests from member countries — including Austria — to look into the takeover due to competition concerns.

In its announcement about the move, the Commission said the investigation was prompted by concern that the merger “could reduce choice for users of music streaming services.” That follows its initial market investigation finding that after taking over Shazam, Apple would obtain access to commercially sensitive data about customers of EU music-streaming competitors.

“Access to such data could allow Apple to directly target its competitors customers and encourage them to switch to Apple Music,” the Commission said.

The Commission is also concerned referrals to other streaming music providers via Shazam would come to an end after the merger with Apple.

The Commission has until September 4 to take a decision on the case.

Original Article