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China charges $77,000 to Tencent and Baidu for anti-monopoly law violations

Tencent and Baidu fined for violating Chinese antitrust regulators


China charges $77,000 to Tencent and Baidu for anti-monopoly law violations | BEAMSTART News

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Tencent and Baidu are among the 12 companies fined 500,000 yuan (~$77,000) each for breaking China's anti-monopoly rule.

According to a statement released by the State Administration for Market Regulation on Friday, Pony Ma's Tencent has been fined $77,000 for its investment in online education app Yuanfudao in 2018.

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Baidu was fined the same amount for acquiring Ainemo Inc., a consumer electronics company that makes voice-controlled speakers, in 2014.

Deals that could establish a "market-dominant player," where a business has more than 50% of the related market, are required to be reported under China's anti-monopoly law.

“The message is clear that seeking government approvals in deals like these are a must,” says Ye Han, a partner at Beijing-based law firm Merits & Tree.

The companies have been fined for not getting prior licenses for the deals, which is a breach of the country's anti-monopoly rules, despite the fact that the regulator determined the deals aren't anti-competitive.

China's antitrust regulator has also fined Alibaba and China Literature, Tencent's e-book spinoff, in December for failing to report previous acquisitions.

“China’s top antitrust regulator said it has issued fines to companies including social media giant Tencent, ride-hailing platform Didi Chuxing, and search engine Baidu over 10 investment deals in the internet sector that were in violation of the anti-monopoly law,” says Technode.

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