Federal and state lawsuits against Facebook looking to make the company sell WhatsApp and Instagram were rejected by a U.S judge. The decision caused a surge in Facebook shares by 4% and put Facebook’s valuation over $1trillion for the first time. The judge cited the failure of FTC to show Facebook had monopoly power in the social networking market. Facebook has requested for last year’s cases filed by the federal government and states to be dismissed.
WhatsApp has filed a lawsuit against the Indian government for new regulations that permit authorities to make users’ private messages “traceable” and conduct mass surveillance. WhatsApp said the new regulations violate Indians’ constitutional rights. The new rules require social media companies to appoint officials to handle on-ground issues and give higher authorities access to delete any post considered offensive.
A lawsuit in the UK was filed against Apple alleging overcharging iPhone and iPad users. The claimants said that the 30% standard fee is excessive and unlawful. Apple said its prices are in the mainstream of those charged by other digital markets. 84% of apps are free and developers are to give a 15% commission to Apple. An estimate of 1.5 mn pounds, as per the lawsuit, has to be compensated to users who purchased anything from the app store since 2015.
Google will spend $3.8 mn, including $2.6 mn in back pay to 5,500 employees, to settle accusations that it underpaid 2,783 women from 2014 to 2017 in its software engineering group in Mountain View, California, and the Seattle area. Hiring rate differences for disadvantaged women and Asian candidates for software engineering roles also came into light. Google will set aside $1.25 mn for pay adjustments for engineers for the next 5 years.
Infosys’ JV partner in Saudi Arabia has filed a lawsuit in a USA court alleging that it violated US law on corruption. Saudi Prerogative Company said Infosys had violated the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act and alleged that Infosys falsely claimed that it didn’t make money from certain contracts and requested it to reduce or wave-off its 8% commission. The Saudi firm claimed that Infosys had made substantial money on the same contracts.
WhiteHat Jr founder Karan Bajaj has filed a defamation case against Engineer Pradeep Poonia for infringing trademarks and copyright, defaming and spreading false information about the firm and its founder. Bajaj in the lawsuit, while seeking $2.6 mn in damages, has accused Poonia of making strong accusations such as likening the startup’s marketing tactics to “child sexual abuse.” Demand for WhiteHat Jr one-to-one classes has surged nearly 90% this year.
Yatra has filed a lawsuit against Atlanta-based software firm Ebix seeking substantial damages over alleged breach of deal terms. The firm has also terminated a pending merger agreement with Ebix. In July 2019, Ebix announced the Yatra acquisition plan at $337.8M enterprise value to strengthen its position in India’s hotel and flight ticketing market. Sharing its financials, Yatra said it had $32.5M in total liquidity with $1.2M being current monthly operating fixed cost.