Indian watchdog throws out antitrust complaint against WhatsApp

Platform News: Opening the WhatsApp app on a smartphone

India’s antitrust watchdog has dismissed a case against WhatsApp, saying that the platform business has not abused its dominant position to expand in the nation’s digital payments marketplace, according to an official order.

A case in March alleged that WhatsApp was bundling its digital payment facility – WhatsApp Pay – within its messaging app for which it already has a large user base. The case alleged WhatsApp was abusing its position by forcing its payments feature on to its existing users.

In a 41-page official order made public late on Tuesday, the Competition Commission of India (CCI) said it didn’t find any contravention of antitrust laws, adding the company’s “actual conduct is yet to manifest in the market” as it has not fully established the service yet.

The order will come as a relief for Facebook-owned WhatsApp, which can be seen close to a complete launch of its payments service in its biggest market by users but one where it’s for months fought to get required clearances. The Supreme Court is hearing cases challenging the growth of its payment services.

WhatsApp has yet to respond to a request for comment.

Related Article:
WhatsApp and PayPal invest in Indonesian super app Gojek

In its defence, the company had advised the CCI its users aren’t required to register for or use WhatsApp’s payment attribute in order to use the messaging service, the order stated.

The team at Platform Executive hope you have enjoyed the ‘Indian watchdog throws out antitrust complaint against WhatsApp‘ article. Initial reporting via our content partners at Reuters. Reporting by Aditi Shah and Aditya Kalra. Editing by Kim Coghill.

To stay on top of the latest developments across the platform economy and gain access to our problem-solving tools and content sets, you can become a member for just $7 per month.

Share this Article