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Google CEO Sundar Pichai Apologises Over Leaked Internal Document on Tactics to Counter EU Rules

first_imgAlphabet CEO Sundar Pichai has apologised to Europe’s industry chief Thierry Breton over a leaked internal document proposing tactics to counter the EU’s tough new rules on internet companies and lobby against the EU commissioner.Pichai and Breton exchanged views in a video-conference call late on Thursday, the third this year, according to a statement from the European Commission.- Advertisement – – Advertisement – “Our online tools have been a lifeline to many people and businesses through lockdown, and Google is committed to continuing to innovate and build services that can contribute to Europe’s economic recovery post-COVID,” spokesman Al Verney said in a statement.The incident underlines the intense lobbying by tech companies against the proposed EU rules, which could impede their businesses and force changes in how they operate.Breton also warned Pichai about the excesses of the internet.“The Internet cannot remain a ‘Wild West’: we need clear and transparent rules, a predictable environment and balanced rights and obligations,” he told Pichai.Breton will announce new draft rules known as the Digital Services Act and the Digital Markets Act together with European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager on December 2.The rules will set out a list of do’s and don’ts for gatekeepers – online companies with market power – forcing them to share data with rivals and regulators and not to promote their services and products unfairly.EU antitrust chief Margrethe Vestager has levied fines totalling EUR 8.25 billion (roughly Rs. 72,780 crore) against Google in the past three years for abusing its market power to favour its shopping comparison service, its Android mobile operating system and its advertising business.Breton told Pichai that he would increase the EU’s power to curb unfair behaviour by gatekeeping platforms, so that the Internet does not just benefit a handful of companies but also Europe’s small- and medium-sized enterprises and entrepreneurs.“Europe’s position is clear: everyone is welcome on our continent – as long as they respect our rules,” he told Pichai.© Thomson Reuters 2020Which is the best TV under Rs. 25,000? We discussed this on Orbital, our weekly technology podcast, which you can subscribe to via Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, or RSS, download the episode, or just hit the play button below. “In any case, yes I had a discussion with Sundar… I told him what I had to tell him….he apologised. (I told him) If you need to tell me something, my door will always be open,” he said.Pichai apologised for the way the document came out, which he said he had not seen or sanctioned, saying that he would engage directly with Breton if he sees language and policy that specifically targets Google, another person familiar with the call said.Google said the two had a frank but open conversation.- Advertisement – The call came after a Google internal document outlined a 60-day strategy to attack the European Union’s push for the new rules by getting US allies to push back against Breton.The call was initiated by Google before the document was leaked. Breton brought up the leaked document and showed it to Pichai during the call.“I was not surprised. I’m not naive. I thought it was a bit old fashioned…,” Breton told the Anglo-American Press Association in a online meeting on Friday, waving the document in the air.- Advertisement –last_img read more

Newcastle’s Cabaye in PSG’s thoughts

first_img “We are very happy with this team, but with all the competitions in which we are engaged we must be aware there will be issues, as we have seen with Adrien Rabiot.” From his perspective, Cabaye sees no reason why he could not be playing Champions League football with Newcastle next season. With United seven points adrift of the all-important fourth-place currently occupied by Liverpool, Cabaye said: “We are in good shape.” Speaking to reporters, he added: “Champions League is a bigger level, but we have the capacity to just stay next to the big teams. “If we are still in a similar position (to challenge for the top four) by the end of the season, why not?” Insisting he is happy at Newcastle, Cabaye added: “For me the most important thing, as I said, is to do my best for the team. “If the manager or the staff are happy with my performance and the fans who are supporting me are happy, I am happy. “My mentality hasn’t changed. Even after what happened in the summer – and I will do my best for the team every day.” At present, Newcastle insist no bid has been received. But with Cabaye in form, scoring five goals in his last seven appearances for Newcastle, and available to play in the Champions League knockout stages, he is an attractive proposition to Blanc. The former France manager is in need of a midfielder after losing Adrien Rabiot to injury. Speaking to Canal+ after PSG thrashed Nantes 5-0 on Sunday to retain their five-point lead at the top of the table, Blanc said: “It would be good to have an extra player in midfield. “We need a player who has the same mentality as the others when they are playing or on the bench. He must love to play. “He must be technically good and be tough, and whether this player comes or does not come, there will be competition in all positions. “I’ve been saying for a month and a half – and the injury to Adrien makes it more urgent – that we need an extra player in midfield.” Asked specifically about Cabaye, Blanc added: “I ask myself. I know the man. He has that character, but there are others. Press Association Paris St Germain coach Laurent Blanc has refused to rule out a move for Newcastle midfielder Yohan Cabaye before the January transfer window closes. Speculation previously surfaced around Cabaye in the summer, when he missed the Magpies’ first three games of the season following a bid from Arsenal. Blanc has made no secret of his admiration for the 28-year-old, and reports suggest PSG are preparing to double the Gunners’ offer with a £20million-plus fee. last_img read more

O’Neill not getting carried away after Vienna victory

first_imgThey beat Austria 1-0 in Vienna last night to make it 3 wins out of 4 in their quest to get to Russia 2018.James McClean got the goal at the Ernst-Happel Stadium to ensure the Republic remain unbeaten in Group D.Manager Martin O’Neill isn’t getting carried away though despite the massive result.last_img

Refocused Sportech loses shine on Stamford impairment

first_img FansUnite accelerates wagering ambitions by acquiring McBookie for $2m  May 20, 2020 Sportech highlights new client wins under lockdown June 26, 2020 Related Articles Share StumbleUpon Submit Share John Williamson to oversee UK Tote Group’s international growth August 28, 2020 Sportech Plc is confident that its expanded product portfolio will help it through the uncertainty of COVID-19, following a year of vital transformations across the company.Publishing its full-year 2019 results, the firm recorded a 2% group revenue increase to £65 million (FY2018: £63.5m) by optimising its cash-generating assets and operations. Product upgrades saw Sportech confirm ‘service growth’ for its flagship international TOTE platform and North American Bump 50:50 in-stadia wagering systems. Furthermore, 2019 saw the company expand its product portfolio by acquiring the digital lottery assets and tech resources of Lot.to. Underlining ‘positive progress’ achieved across its core divisions, Sportech recorded group gross profits of £47 million (FY2018: £46m) as it declared a 2019 adjusted EBITDA of £7.5 million (FY2018: £6.5m).Despite achieving improved top-line metrics, Sportech has widened 2019 corporate losses to £8.4 million (£2.6m), having accounted for a £5 million impairment attributed to its Stamford sports bar asset.Richard McGuire – SportechRichard McGuire, Chief Executive Officer of Sportech, said: “We continue to progress our strategic agenda focused on driving further development of our Group platforms following 2019 growth opportunity investments, whilst managing the inherent cost base. Despite the challenging retail environment and excluding some cost measures taken to reposition the Group, our performance in 2019 has been as expected.“In particular, we have recorded positive progress with key performance metrics beyond, the typically focussed, EBITDA measure; namely cash generation from operational activities, capex reductions and delivery of a lower operational cost base going forward.”In 2020, Sportech will continue to implement its Venue transformation programme, seeking to execute better cost management and with the improved use of its systems.Short-term corporate directives, see Sportech governance cite extending sports wagering contracts across the state of Connecticut as a group-wide critical focus.Mirroring industry counterparts, Sportech admitted that it was difficult to provide accurate guidance amid the uncertainty of COVID-19 impacts witnessed across the global sporting and racing calendar.McGuire explained: “Understandably, the period of disruption is uncertain, but having strengthened our online capabilities during 2019 we are better positioned to deliver a broader service wherever possible. “In this period of concern and uncertainty, we initiated a Sportech COVID-19 response task force and continue to work closely with our clients and our staff to ensure, as best we can, a combination of continuity where permissible and precautionary safety measures.“Notwithstanding the uncertain short-term outlook, we remain focused on maintaining the Group’s financial strength with £11.0 million net cash and no debt as of the end of February 2020.”last_img read more