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Google Fined $57m by France, Theresa May Proposes Plan B, Chinese Apps Seek Excessive Information from Indian Consumers et al.

Professor of Financial Economics and Part-time Value Investor, Transfin.
Jan 22, 2019 3:02 PM 4 min read

Chinese apps seek excessive information from Indian consumers. Google fined $57m by France for failure to comply with GDPR. Theresa May proposes Plan B with no major changes. 


Now to Today's Top Business News Stories in Our End Of Day Wrap Up:

 Google Fined $57m by France, Theresa May Proposes Plan B, Chinese Apps Seek Excessive Information from Indian Consumers et al.


RBI loosens norms for new players in retail payments.

The What: As per the RBI’s “Policy Paper on Authorisation of New Retail Payment Systems”, a wide range of payment systems in India are primarily operated by a select few. This has raised concerns around the need for competition to ensure economic efficiency and financial stability.

In order to encourage more players to participate in and promote pan-India payment platforms, the RBI is:  

  • Considering to bring an “on-tap window’ to distribute licences to entities entering the payments industry 
  • Looking to reduce the minimum net-worth requirement for payment systems operators
  • Considering to permit bank and non-bank entities to offer payment systems based on their capabilities and potential, risk assessment etc.


Get a succinct summary of the policy paper here.

Bonus: Read RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das’s maiden speech at Vibrant Gujarat here.



WhatsApp caps the number of forwards. Chinese apps seek excessive information from Indian consumers. 

You've Crossed Your Limit: In a bid to curb fake news, messaging platform WhatsApp has put a limit to the number of times a user can forward a message to five, globally. 

Hit Refresh: Previously, a user could forward a message to 20 individuals or groups. The limit of 5 was first rolled out in India in July last year in the wake of rising cases of fake news driven violence.

Something’s Fishy: As per a study commissioned by The Economic Times, top 10 most popular Chinese apps including Helo, Shareit, Tiktok, UC Browser, Vigo Video, Beauty Plus, ClubFactory Everything, NewsDog, UC News and VMate seek excessive information from Indian users such as access to camera and microphones even when such access is not required. 

What You Need to Know: This is 45% more than the number of permissions requested by Top 50 global apps. The data acquired is transferred to around seven outside agencies, with 69% of the data being transferred to the US.

Read this rather fascinating report by WSJ which talks about how Indians are so crazy about mobile video that they use YouTube like Google. “People in India are increasingly using YouTube as if it is a search engine...They find it easier to watch something, rather than sift through text.” (Tweet This)



OYO in talks to acquire co-working company Innov8. Kalaari Capital strengthens team as it readies 4th India-dedicated fund worth $200m. 

OYO Expands: As per an Entrakr report, hospitality company OYO is reportedly in the final stages to acquire co-working company Innov8. 

Perspective: The acquisition will mark OYO’s foray into coworking business and will be the fourth acquisition by the company after its earlier acquisition of wedding planning website Weddingz, Internet of Things (IoT) technology company AblePlus and apartment operator Novascotia Boutique Homes.

Kalaari Beefs Up: The Bengaluru-based Venture Capital firm Kalaari Capital recently appointed Saurav Banerjee, former co-CEO of NDTV, Sreedhar Prasad, former Head of Consumer Markets and Internet Business Advisory at KPMG India, and Devneet Bajaj, Founder of agri-tech startup MITRA, as venture partners as it plans to raise $200m for a new India-based fund.

Backtrack: Kalaari Capital has earlier backed companies like Urban Ladder, Curefit and Myntra, and is likely to focus on technology-focused startups going ahead.

Google Fined $57m by France, Theresa May Proposes Plan B, Chinese Apps Seek Excessive Information from Indian Consumers et al.


Google fined $57m by France for failure to comply with GDPR. Google to reveal details of political ads, spends ahead of 2019 General Elections.

Privacy Policy: French data privacy body CNIL (National Data Protection Commission) has hit Google with a fine of €50 million ($57 million) for its failure to comply with the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Violations: Two core privacy violations observed by the watchdog were: 

  • Visibility of information relating to how Google processes data, for how long it stores it, and the kinds of information it uses to personalize advertisements is not easy to access 
  • Google does not “validly” gain user consent for processing their data to use in ads personalization


Custom Made For India: Ahead of the upcoming 2019 General Elections, the tech giant is set to introduce an India-specific Political Advertising Transparency Report and searchable Political Ads Library. (Tweet This) The report and library will provide comprehensive information about who are purchasing election ads on Google platforms and how much money is being spent.



Theresa May proposes Plan B with no major changes. 

No Change: After the British Parliament rejected her proposed Brexit Deal and having survived the no-confidence motion thereafter, Theresa May proposed a Plan B in the parliament on Monday. With the exception of the government no longer asking Europeans living in the UK to pay a £65 ($83) fee to register to remain in the UK following Brexit, Plan B seemed much alike Plan A.

Also this: Next week, the Parliament is set to vote on a series of amendments designed either to rule out the possibility of a no-deal exit, to promote alternative forms of Brexit, or to give Parliament itself greater control over the process.

Theresa May may face another round of Brexit questions on Tuesday.  


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