The Communications Employees of America (CWA) union has backed a brand new Prohibiting Anticompetitive Mergers Act that may permit the Justice Division (DOJ) and Federal Commerce Fee (FTC) to robotically block mergers price greater than $5 billion without having to go to court docket.
As famous by Politico, the invoice would particularly require the DOJ and FTC to transform their merger processes to make it harder for firms to problem their selections, whereas additionally granting each businesses the flexibility to reverse mergers in the event that they “materially hurt” staff, customers , and small enterprise, or finally lead to a greater than 50 p.c market share.
The CWA, which is the biggest communications and media labor union in the US, mentioned the laws will assist “put an finish to anticompetitive mergers that destroy jobs, put downward stress on staff’ wages, and go away the communities the place we reside and work to select up the items.”
The union has additionally recommended the invoice — backed by senior Democrats together with Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Sen. Bernie Sanders, and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez — would encourage regulators just like the FTC to extra intently scrutinize offers corresponding to Microsoft’s staggering $68.7 billion buy of Activision Blizzard, which it believes may hurt staff’ rights.
“Activision Blizzard workers are going through rampant surveillance, intimidation, and union-busting techniques in response to their efforts to alter a tradition of employee abuse and discrimination,” mentioned the CWA in an announcement.
“Sen. Warren’s invoice would make sure the merger’s impression on these staff is prioritized by federal regulators and add a mandatory examine on company mergers by directing businesses to assessment and reject potential offers that may hurt staff’ potential to safe higher futures, as Activision staff are attempting to do.”
The CWA not too long ago joined different advocacy teams in calling on the FTC to completely examine the Microsoft-Activision deal over fears it may “result in an undue focus of market energy.”
At this stage, it is price remembering the Prohibiting Anticompetitive Mergers Act is unlikely to turn out to be legislation through the present legislative cycle because of the slim Democratic majorities in each the Home and Senate.
Nonetheless, its introduction serves as a loud warning shot to these firms — together with many within the video games business — who’ve extra profitable M&A alternatives of their sights.