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China’s Alibaba, Tencent unit fined under antitrust law

Hong Kong (AP)-China’s market regulators said Monday that Alibaba Group and Tencent Holdings-backed companies were fined for not seeking approval before proceeding with the acquisition.

We will also begin a review of the integration of the two online streaming platforms in the latest tightening of control over the Internet sector.

In a statement, China’s Market Regulatory Authority fined Alibaba 500,000 yuan ($ 76,500) on Monday for increasing its investment in a department store company’s in-time retail group to 73.79% without seeking approval. Stated.

China Literature, an online publisher and e-book company spun off by Tencent, was fined the same amount for not seeking approval for the acquisition of New Classics Media. Separately, the Shenzhen Hive Box, backed by Chinese courier SF Express, has been accused of acquiring China Post Smart Logistics.

Chinese market regulators are also considering merging two major Chinese game streaming platforms, DouYu International Holdings and Huya Inc. Tencent, the world’s largest gaming company that owns shares in both companies, led the transaction and controlled 67.5% of the voting share. In a merged business.

This move occurs as Internet companies increasingly monitor their monopoly behavior. Last month, China announced proposed regulations to crack down on anti-competitive practices in the industry, including signing exclusive contracts with merchants and using subsidies to squeeze competitors.

“We want businesses to understand that antitrust laws apply to all businesses,” regulators said in another statement.

“Platform companies are not outside the scope of antitrust laws. Internet platform companies need to adhere to antitrust laws and regulations and maintain fair market competition,” he said.

Alibaba and Tencent shares both fell about 2.6% on Monday.

Alibaba acquired InTime Retail in an attempt to combine e-commerce with offline retail, and China Literature acquired New Classics Media to expand its content offerings.

Both companies did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Tight controls over Chinese Internet companies reflect a similar focus on US tech companies, and lawmakers and regulators are investigating companies such as Facebook and Google for anti-competitive practices. Earlier this month, the Federal Trade Commission accused Facebook of buying rivals, quelling them and clearing the competition. FTC called for Facebook to end its acquisition of WhatsApp and Instagram.

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China’s Alibaba, Tencent unit fined under antitrust law

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