Brian Albrecht on the FTC’s AI Investigation

ICLE Chief Economist Brian Albrecht was quoted by GZero, in a story about the Federal Trade Commission’s investigation of  investments by tech giants into smaller AI startups. You can read the full piece here.

Brian Albrecht, chief economist for the International Center for Law & Economics, said there’s no question that Khan “believes there was too little scrutiny on previous tech acquisitions and wants to get ahead.” He says she’s been overeager with a “desire to bring any tech case, instead of good cases” (such as the Meta-Within case). Still, while the FTC hasn’t yet brought a case against these AI investments, Albrecht says it “has a flavor of ‘we need to do something, and this is something.’”

…“The arrangement does not get some sort of special immunity because it isn’t a standard investment,” Albrecht says. “That being said, investments, joint ventures, strategic partnerships have often (and should) received more leniency from the agencies.”

…“The current state is that any Big Tech company has to worry about the FTC for any major investment or business decision they make,” Albrecht says. “That makes investments relatively more attractive than acquisitions.”