China has launched an antitrust investigation into Alibaba Group and will summon the Ant Group affiliate to meet. The probe is part of a crackdown on monopolistic behaviour in the country’s booming internet industry, and the latest setback for Ma, China’s most famous entrepreneur. Last month, China suspended Ant’s planned $37 bn IPO, which was on the track to become the world’s largest, just two days before the official launch in Shanghai and Hong Kong.
The US Justice Department sued Google accusing it of illegally using its market dominance to hobble competition to rule the market for decades. The lawsuit could lead to the break-up of the company synonymous with the internet and search. The complaint, joined by 11 states, alleges that Google acted unlawfully to maintain its position in search and search advertising on the internet. It went on to say that it bought its success through payments to mobile phone makers.
Google is facing a new antitrust case in India in which it is alleged to have abused the dominance of its Android OS in the smart TV market. The CCI has been looking into allegations that Google engages in anti-competitive practices by creating a barrier for firms wanting to use modified versions of Android for smart TVs. This means that if a firm develops Android-based smartphones, it is mandatory for them to use the Android OS in the smart TV as well.
As China embarks on major revamp of its antitrust laws, it is preparing to launch a probe into Google, looking into the allegations that the tech giant has leveraged Android’s dominance to stifle competition and that its market position could cause extreme danger to Chinese firms like Huawei. The case was proposed by Huawei Technologies last year. The decision of the potential investigation could be affected by the state of China’s relationship with the US.