FTC’s Intrusive Overreach is Harming America’s Startup Ecosystem and the Disruptive Innovation that Promotes Competition and Small Business Growth

By at 5 April, 2024, 4:50 pm



Washington, D.C. – Today’s move by Meta, announcing it has filed a motion for summary judgment in a District Court requesting the dismissal of a Federal Trade Commission (FTC) lawsuit that challenges the acquisitions of Instagram and WhatsApp, is a reminder of what’s at stake in regard to the deeply troubling agenda and motives of the agency’s leadership. According to the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council (SBE Council), the FTC’s unwarranted legal and regulatory actions are harming U.S. innovation and the startup ecosystem, which puts the U.S. economy and small businesses at great risk. SBE Council president & CEO Karen Kerrigan said:

“A broad range of regulatory and legal actions taken by the FTC are not in the interest of competition and small business, as Chair Lina Khan regularly claims. In fact, these actions are working to greatly damage America’s best-in-class ecosystem for startups while undermining the positive activity – such as investment and risk-taking – that is responsible for the disruptive innovation that benefits small businesses and consumers. These actions are harming competition. As in other legal cases the FTC has pursued and lost, we believe their weak case against Meta will meet the same fate. A rational understanding of markets, competition and economics will ultimately win out. Unfortunately, such rationality and common sense remain sorely lacking within the FTC leadership circle.”

SBE Council chief economist Raymond J. Keating added:

“This FTC lawsuit against Meta is a glaring case of a political ideology – in this case, government blindly believing that ‘big’ is automatically bad – run amok, with any semblance of economic rationality lost. The FTC simply chooses to ignore the realities of the marketplace, for example, that no true monopoly exists, and that the market is dynamic and highly competitive. For good measure, the FTC’s escapades in opposing mergers and acquisitions for political reasons mean that entrepreneurs and small businesses will find it increasingly difficult to access the investment capital necessary to grow and innovate. If the FTC is out to restrain entrepreneurship, growth and competitiveness in the U.S., then it has chosen the right path. In the current case, reversing a previously approved acquisition would chill, and likely is chilling, productive M&A activity that helps startups bring their innovations to the mass marketplace and compete with big businesses.”

Related SBE Council Resources:

Small Business and FTC Diverge on “Big Tech” Antitrust Issues, Small Business Insider

5 Major Woes for Small Businesses Due to Antitrust Activism, Small Business Insider

SBE Council Comments to DOJ/FTC on Draft Merger Guidelines

Regulators are Undermining Startups by Attacking America’s M&A System and Activity

FTC-DOJ Proposed Merger Guidelines Threaten U.S. Economic Leadership and Startups

FTC Watch: Khan’s “Wins” are Major U.S. Economic and Startup Losses

Collateral Damage of Khan’s FTC War on Big Business: Entrepreneurship, Innovation, Consumers

The FTC’s Bizarre Attempt to Rationalize Regulatory Overreach

Innovation & Startup Ecosystem at Risk: Revamping the U.S. M&A Regulatory Framework


Karen Kerrigan,

Raymond Keating,

SBE Council is a nonpartisan advocacy, research and education organization dedicated to protecting small business and promoting entrepreneurship. For nearly 30 years, SBE Council has worked on and advanced a range of private sector and public policy initiatives to strengthen the ecosystem for strong startup activity and small business growth.

Visit for additional information. Twitter: @SBECouncil



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