PhonePe founder and CEO Sameer Nigam is supporting his most despised opponent Paytm in its battle against Google. Responding to the Google versus Paytm discussion unexpectedly, the organiser of Walmart-possessed PhonePe said Google’s play store strategies might be steady yet they aren’t right. Including that Indians laws and the antitrust controller CCI are missing the mark.
The Paytm app was brought down from the Google Play Store a week ago. While Google said it doesn’t permit online casinos. It also doesn’t support any unregulated betting applications. Paytm said this was a sticker cashback plot. It in this manner pulled back the advancement and was back on the Play Store following a couple of hours. Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma hit out at Google for the unbalanced force it uses over the Indian web environment.
While Nigam said Google’s strategies are applied reliably they aren’t right and need more examination by the Competition Commission of India.
Sameer Nigam’s words for Paytm
“I think if you’re asking me if they’ve applied them consistently. I believe they have if you’re asking me if it’s right, I believe it’s not. And those are two very different things. The policy is being defined by a team that’s not sitting in India. Last year, we had at least four or five takedown notices. Every time it goes, our request for a hearing goes into a sinkhole. We’ve had one from Apple in the past, and we got a response from their policy team within 48 hours” he said.
He added “the reason it’s relevant is that they are a natural monopoly. I think the question is, can the policy of a natural monopoly prevail over the law of the land? Now, this is where it gets very tricky. Normally, any company can say these are my house rules, and that’s fair. But when you reach a 95% plus monopoly situation, what is the rule of engagement in the market you play in? And I think this is where our laws are falling short, our CCI is falling short. By the way, I think globally, governments are realizing that they’re falling short because we’ve always very narrowly defined matters of antitrust-searches are different, ads or different gaming is different. OSS different play those different. No, they’re not, because they’re leveraging that exact same ecosystem to compete against Paytm or compete against PhonePe all day long,”.
PhonePe backing Paytm
When asked if PhonePe would have run a scheme like Paytm on their app, Nigam said, “I think what they’ve done is consistent with, like, using a cashback to promote an application or a category is consistent with anything that is happening across every category. That’s very normal consumer behaviour. Would we do it perhaps? Not at the risk of getting taken down But is it a good fight to fight- for a change I might actually align. I think this is a good fight to fight.”
Nigam further said that legitimate response won’t fill in as Google is on solid ground as a privately owned business to implement an arrangement that is more prohibitive.
“CCI is I think, where the answer lies, but it needs to reimagine its charter significantly, The problem is play store distribution gives every Google vertical product a huge distribution edge. So CCI then needs to decide what is Google’s business? Is it 10 different businesses, because they will actually not be able to build a case on anyone alone. If they look at the composite, then I think there’s a very powerful case, right? Because they’re playing house, they’re playing dealer, and they’ve got about six of the eight seats on the poker table. And I think CCI doesn’t look at it that way. You can’t punish Google for being a natural monopoly. You just need to demand consistency across category play.”
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