Unions pressure FTC to reject Amazon purchase of MGM Studios

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Four massive unions, together with the Service Employees International Union and the Teamsters, urged the US Federal Trade Commission on Monday to oppose Amazon’s plan to purchase Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios, saying it will cut back competitors within the streaming video market.

Amazon introduced the $8.45 billion deal in May, saying the purchase of the fabled US film studio, dwelling to the James Bond franchise, would give it a library of movies and TV reveals to compete with rivals like Netflix and Disney+.

The unions, in a report by an entity they help referred to as the Strategic Organizing Center, argued that the deal would deliver Amazon’s industry-leading streaming library to greater than 55,000 titles, with extra underneath growth, which might give the corporate larger incentive to discriminate towards rivals. Netflix has the second-greatest quantity of titles at just below 20,000, the letter stated.

“The prospect of Amazon acquiring a trove of additional MGM content to build on Amazon’s existing vast library should raise alarm bells,” the group stated. “With control over MGM’s vast library, Amazon may acquire enough market power over streaming content to raise prices for (streaming video-on-demand) SVOD competitors or for SVOD consumers.”

Amazon, which the group stated grew exponentially throughout the US coronavirus lockdown, has used its streaming service to appeal to new Prime members. Prime members make up some 68 % of Amazon buyers and spend considerably greater than non-Prime buyers, the group stated.

The Service Employees International Union, International Brotherhood of Teamsters, Communications Workers of America and the United Farmworkers, despatched the letter to Holly Vedova, director of the FTC’s Bureau of Competition.

Amazon handily beat again an effort by the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union to manage a Bessemer, Ala., warehouse earlier this yr. But unions have continued to manage, with the RWDSU gearing up probably to strive once more.

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