The government is finalizing the rules for online games; LazyPay updates terms after RBI order

Over the past year, states such as Karnataka and Rajasthan have passed online gambling laws to regulate the nascent industry. Now the Union government is in the final stages of developing its own set of rules for online gambling companies. Officials told us it would be “a lightweight framework that coexists with regulations” that states have passed.

Also in this letter:
■ LazyPay updates terms to comply with RBI order
Ecom Express Seeks $125-150 Million in Funding as IPO Plans Stall
■ Crypto a ‘clear danger’ to financial systems: RBI Governor


The government will cover a lot of ground in the final online gambling framework

The Union Government is developing an extensive framework to regulate online gambling companies, including proposals for time-limited retention of specific user data and robust grievance redress mechanisms, we senior government officials said.

Final steps: An inter-ministerial task force comprising finance, interior, IT, sports and youth secretaries, as well as officials from the Ministry of Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade and Niti Aayog are working on the rules, which are expected to be released soon, sources said.

“We are in the early stages of discussions. A nodal ministry that will administer the rules is yet to be finalized,” an official said, adding that “it must be a lightweight framework that coexists with the regulations that states such as Rajasthan and Karnataka have already drawn up for their jurisdiction. .”

Light touch: Stressing that gambling is a very nascent sector, the official noted that the government does not “wish to opt for excessive regulation and stifle innovation in the field”. Among the approaches discussed is the inclusion of the gaming sector within the scope of the rules on information technology.

“With social media intermediaries, there are now set guidelines of do’s and don’ts. The Ministry (of Computing) has emergency powers which it can invoke under various sections of the Computing Act. We also need to consider including those in the gaming industry,” said one person involved in the discussions.


LazyPay Updates Terms to Comply with RBI Order

Lazy Pay

LazyPay, the lending arm of PayU India, has updated its terms and conditions to comply with a recent directive from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) which prohibited prepaid payment instruments (PPIs) from being loaded with credit lines. credit.

The Buy-Now-Pay-Later (BNPL) service asked customers in a message on Thursday to accept the terms or else all transactions would be blocked on LazyPay products.

“To comply with the latest regulations, we need to block your transactions on all LazyPay products starting today. To continue using LazyPay, please accept the updated terms and conditions now,” the company said in a communication. to customers.

We were the first to report LazyPay’s plans to update its terms on June 23.

chronology

On June 20, the central bank banned non-bank wallets and prepaid cards from loading their lines of credit on these platforms.

The move has caused disruption among some card-based lending and fintech businesses. Industry stakeholders have since contacted the RBI for consultations.

Earlier this week, Slice updated its terms and conditions, saying it would charge customers a 36% interest rate for loan repayments made in installments.


Ecom Express Seeks $125-150 Million in Private Funding as IPO Plans Stall

logistic

Ecom Express, an e-commerce-focused logistics player that was preparing for a listing before markets turned choppy, is seeking to raise $125-150 million in private funding, people familiar with the matter have said. .

Ecom Express, like several other top startups, has suspended its initial public offering (IPO) plan for now.

The company is working with investment banks JM Financial and Barclays to raise funds, according to people familiar with its investor pitch, and is looking to benchmark itself against Delhivery, the largest third-party logistics player which went public in May. .

“IPO seems unlikely in a market right now and they have offered investors a round of up to $150 million. Conversations are early and a valuation has not yet been finalized,” one person said. .

The Warburg Pincus-backed company is valued at around $760 million, according to Tracxn.

Closed deals ETtech

venture capital firm

■ Revenue-based funding platform GetVantage raised $36 million in a funding round led by Varanium Nexgen, Fintech Fund, Chiratae Ventures and a few others. It will use the new funds to improve its technology, evolve its products and venture across Southeast Asia.

■ AquaExchnage, a fintech platform for India’s shrimp and fish ecosystem, raised $3 million from Endiya Partners, Accion Venture Lab and a few others. Launched in 2020 by Pavan Kosaraju, AquaExchange offers a fintech-enabled e-commerce platform that provides manufacturers with high-quality materials at affordable prices and a “hardware-as-a-service” platform.

■ Urvann, a hyperlocal market focused on gardening, raised Rs 3 crore in a seed funding round led by Inflection Point Ventures (IPV). It plans to use the new funds to expand its operations.

TWEET OF THE DAY


Cryptocurrencies are a ‘clear danger’ to financial systems: RBI governor

Cryptocurrencies are clearly in danger, says RBI Governor

Reiterating his longstanding stance on cryptocurrencies, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Shaktikanta Das said in the 25th issue of the RBI’s Financial Stability Report (FSR) that “we must be aware of the emerging risks on the horizon”.

Sophisticated speculation: “Cryptocurrencies are an obvious danger. Anything that derives value from pretense, without any underlying asset, is speculation under a fancy name,” Das said in the foreword to the report released on Thursday.

Drastic measures: The report, which reflects the Financial Stability and Development Board’s (FSDC) subcommittee’s collective assessment of risks to financial stability and financial system resilience, said crypto assets are seen as a growing threat. which justifies drastic approaches by national authorities.

He noted that global regulatory efforts continue to focus on risks associated with the crypto ecosystem and the “threat of decentralization.”

Collapse of Terra: The report also mentions the collapse of native Terra blockchain token Luna in May, which wiped out over $40 billion in investor wealth.


SoftBank-backed Lenskart buys Japan’s Owndays in $400m deal

Lenskart financing

Lenskart, the Softbank-backed omnichannel eyewear retailer, has taken a majority stake in Owndays – a Japanese direct-to-consumer eyewear brand – the company announced. The strategic partnership through this merger will build Asia’s largest omnichannel eyewear retailer, Lenskart added.

Details: The deal is valued at around $400 million for Owndays, a source tells us. The company declined to disclose the size of the deal.

Owndays’ majority shareholders – L Catterton Asia and Mitsui & Co., Principal Investments – will sell their stakes to Lenskart as part of the deal.

Ownays co-founders Shuji Tanaka and Take Umiyam will remain shareholders and lead Ownays’ management team post-deal. It will continue to operate as a separate brand.


Other Top Stories by our journalists

tata click

Tata Cliq will be integrated into Tata Neu: Online retail platform Tata Cliq is set to be integrated into the super app Tata Neu and become a subsidiary of Tata Digital as the group seeks to consolidate its major e-commerce businesses under this entity, officials close to the body have told us. development.

Ankiti Bose leaves Zilingo’s board of directors: Ankiti Bose, co-founder and former CEO of beleaguered B2B e-commerce firm Zilingo, has resigned as a director of the company due to “information opacity”, she announced in a statement Thursday. Instagram post.

Swiggy Esop Clearance: Swiggy announced that its employees will have the option to receive up to $23 million in cash against their stock options, marking the first stage of its two-year liquidity plan.

QuickBooks for leaving India: Global tech giant Intuit will shut down its Quickbooks financial management suite in India on January 31, 2023, according to an email from the company. Quickbooks was launched in India in 2012. The company has around four million customers globally, less than 1-2% of them in India.


Global Choices We Read

■ Singapore’s proposed online safety laws look like more disguised censorship (Rest of the world)
■ Tencent and ByteDance make further layoffs amid China’s economic woes (WSJ)
■ The fight over which uses of AI Europe should ban (Cable)

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