Companies

CCI may probe Amazon-Future Coupon deal

Forum Gandhi Mumbai | Updated on February 13, 2021

The Competition Commission of India (CCI) may review the investment approval granted to Amazon in 2019 for acquiring a stake in Future Group’s Future Coupons Private Limited (FCPL).

This agreement has now become the centre of the dispute between Amazon and Future group.

According to legal sources, the CCI will examine if Amazon had disclosed that it had put conditions on the promoters of the Future Group and other companies when it comes to selling, partnering, or collaborating with any other retailer in India.

This comes after Amazon recently revealed that the 2019 agreement had categorically prohibited Future Retail from selling a stake to Reliance Industries. Amazon has challenged the Rs 25,000 crore deal between Future Retail on the ground that it violated the 2019 agreement.

Future group on the other hand has maintained that the 2019 agreement was between Future Coupons and Amazon, therefore it has no bearing on Future Retail.

 

The eCommerce giant’s lawyers have been stating that without its permission, Future could not sell, partner, or collaborate with any other restricted party in India.

According to its proposal to the CCI in 2019, Amazon had represented that it was interested in investing in Future Coupons because it is a company engaged in selling gift cards and wants to collaborate on payments solutions with Future Group through this company.

“CCI had then evaluated its application and concluded that there is no threat to fair competition if Future Coupons and Amazon Pay works together,” said a source adding that the CCI approval was conditional.

According to the source, Point 16 in the CCI approval order stated that, “This order shall stand revoked if, at any time, the information provided by the Acquirer is found to be incorrect. This approval should not be construed as immunity in any manner from subsequent proceedings before the Commission for violations of other provisions of the Act.”

Amazon and Future Group did not respond to BusinessLine's query.

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Published on February 13, 2021
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