DOJ's Visa-Plaid Challenge Shows Email Can Imperil A Deal

Law360 (November 23, 2020, 5:51 PM EST) -- Unlike other mergers challenged by the U.S. Department of Justice, Visa Inc.'s acquisition of Plaid Inc. on its face presents no apparent risk of antitrust harm.

Visa and Plaid have no product overlaps. They don't have a customer-supplier relationship. Visa enables transactions between consumers and merchants. Plaid connects fintech apps to users' bank accounts.

The evidence comes from the parties' — primarily Visa's — own emails and other internal documents, revealing Plaid's product road map to build a cheaper alternative to Visa's debit service and Visa's plans to hold back that development.

Until the DOJ's Nov. 5 complaint, the deal had...

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