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EU Hands Qualcomm $271 Million Fine

The European Commission has imposed a fine of €242 million (around $271 million) on U.S. chipmaker Qualcomm for behavior it termed "predatory pricing". The EU is alleging Qualcomm at some time abused its market dominance in 3G baseband chipsets by selling them at below production cost with an aim to force competitor Icera out of the market. Such activity is illegal under EU antitrust law.

The EU alleges Qualcomm abused its market dominance between mid-2009 and mid-2011 by selling certain 3G baseband chipsets below production cost to Huawei and ZTE, claiming this was done with an aim of eliminating Icera, Qualcomm's main rival in the 3G baseband market as at that time. An investigation into Qualcomm was first launched by the European Commission in 2015.


The European Commission opened a formal investigation on the 16th of July 2015 and sent out a Statement of Objections [a document stating preliminary concerns of its investigation] on 8 December 2015. Another Statement of…

Taxify : The Uber Challenger Worth $1 Billion

Taxify co-founders and brothers Markus Villig (left) and Martin Villig
image : Taxify

Taxify, an Estonia founded and headquartered on-demand transportation service, is widely known as leading ride-hailing service in the European region, challenging established players like Uber with its 15 million users across 31 countries. The company, launched in 2013, raised $175 million in funding led by Daimler - in May last year - that valued it at $1 billion, pushing it into the unicorn club, alongside other ride-hailing companies like Cabify, Lyft, Didi Chuxing, Grab, Go-Jek, Ola Cabs, Gett and BlaBlaCar.

In addition to being a top on-demand rideshare service, Taxify also recently got into dockless electric scooters, with a first launch in Paris under the Bolt brand, that sees it competing with services like Bird, Lime, Spin, Skip, Scoot and Uber's Jump Bikes. Founded in 2013 by then high-schooler Markus Villig, Taxify was created with an aim to hop all taxis in the Estonian city of Tallinn and Riga - the capital of Latvia, a country bordering Estonia - onto one platform. It made its first foreign debut a year later and now operates in the 31 countries listed below :

Bolt scooters in Paris

image : Taxify

  1. Australia 
  2. Austria 
  3. Azerbaijan 
  4. Croatia 
  5. Cyprus 
  6. Czech Republic 
  7. Estonia 
  8. Finland 
  9. France 
  10. Georgia 
  11. Ghana 
  12. Hungary 
  13. Iraq 
  14. Kenya 
  15. Latvia 
  16. Lithuania 
  17. Malta 
  18. Mexico
  19. Nigeria
  20. Poland 
  21. Portugal 
  22. Romania 
  23. Russia 
  24. Saudi Arabia 
  25. Serbia 
  26. Slovakia 
  27. South Africa 
  28. Tanzania 
  29. Uganda 
  30. Ukraine and 
  31. The United Kingdom.

Prior to its most recent $175 million round, Taxify had raised only $2.2 million in known funding according to Crunchbase data. Daimler - the automobile giant behind the auto brand Mercedes-Benz - that led its $175 million round in May 2018 was joined by investors including Korelya Capital and TransferWise co-founder Taavet Hinrikus.

Hinrikus has a noteworthy history with the company, being the first employee at Skype, a company Taxify co-founder Martin Villig joined when it was only a small startup. Skype as we know, made it big with a $2.6 billion acquisition by eBay in 2005 followed by a Microsoft purchase for $8.5 billion in 2011.

image : Taxify


Taxify has succeeded in stamping its name as a key player in the ride-hailing market and a main contender to Uber in Europe and Africa. Uber, the leader and pioneer of on-demand rideshare expected to go public soon, also has competition from Ola Cabs in India, Go-Jek in Indonesia, Gett in Israel, Careem in the Middle East and Cabify in Spain.

Facing intense competition, although at the top in the ride-hailing industry, Uber made use of a unique strategy in China and South East Asia, Merging its local operations with China's Didi Chuxing and Singapore's Grab, getting significant stakes in both companies while exiting from the regions - a win-win for both sides.

Taxify's 25 year old CEO Markus Villig

image : Taxify

In its six year span, Taxify has grown to become the number one travel app in Kenya and Nigeria in 2017, the number two travel app in South Africa in 2018 and the top taxi service in Baltic nations - Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania. It has marked as one of the fastest growing on-demand transportation services in Europe, Africa and the world at large, employing over 450 across 23 countries as of current.





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