Meta issued the following statement from Jason Rubin, VP of Play, on February 8, 2023: “Today, we’re officially welcoming the Within team to Meta! We’re eager to partner with this talented group in bringing the future of VR fitness to life.”
For those catching up on what Supernatural is be sure to check out our interview from 2021 with head of fitness Leanne Pedante:
Our report published February 7th follows:
A report from The Verge indicates that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) won’t appeal the recent court decision ruling against an injunction to block Meta Platforms from acquiring Within.
In late 2021, the FTC opened an antitrust probe into Meta’s proposed acquisition of Within, the startup behind VR fitness service Supernatural. Then in July 2022, the FTC sought an injunction to prevent Meta from going through with the acquisition while the FTC conducted its own separate in-house investigation. Last week, US District Judge Edward Davila that denied the FTC’s request for an injunction.
Davila also issues a temporary restraining order last week that would prevent Meta from closing the deal for a week, giving time for the FTC to appeal the decision. However, The Verge reports that an agency official told reporters on Monday that the FTC will not appeal the court’s decision. The Verge says that FTC officials were “optimistic that its failure to stop Meta’s merger wouldn’t harm its abilities to improve competition in the broader tech industry.”
With an appeal out of the question, Meta Platforms should be able to finalize its acquisition, which was first reported in October 2021. Last week, Meta issued the following statement in light of the court decision, attributable to a Meta spokesperson:
“We are pleased that the Court has denied the FTC’s motion to block our acquisition of Within. This deal will bring pro-competitive benefits to the ecosystem and spur innovation that will benefit people, developers, and the VR space more broadly. We look forward to closing the transaction soon.”
UploadVR reached out to Meta for comment on the FTC’s decision not to appeal the ruling, and we’ll update if we hear back.