NCLAT rejects Amazon’s appeal; orders deposit of Rs. 200 crore penalty in 45 days

On June 13, the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) dismissed Amazon’s appeal against the Competition Commission of India’s (CCI) decision to suspend approval for the e-commerce giant’s deal with Future Coupons. Justice M. Venugopal and Ashok Kumar Mishra of a two-judge bench upheld the CCI’s findings and ordered Amazon to pay a penalty of Rs. 200 crores to the fair trade regulator within 45 days of Monday.

National Company Law Appellate Tribunal (NCLAT) is in complete agreement with CCI

The two-member bench stated, “This appellate tribunal is in complete agreement” with the CCI. CCI had suspended its approval of Amazon’s deal to acquire a 49 percent stake in Future Coupons Pvt Ltd in December of last year (FCPL).

Amazon had suppressed information while seeking clearances for the transaction at the time, according to the regulator, who also fined the company 202 crores. Future Retail Ltd is promoted by FCPL (FRL). Amazon had objected to FRL’s sale of assets to Reliance Retail as part of a 24.713-crore deal that has now been canceled. 

The e-commerce behemoth objected to the deal because of a 2019 transaction in which it acquired a 49 percent stake in FCPL. The NCLAT’s hearing on Amazon’s plea was completed in April of this year. Before the registry, all parties had filed revised notes of submissions with relevant citations.

The appellate tribunal had reserved its decision

The appellate tribunal had reserved its decision on two other petitions in the case filed by the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) and the All India Consumer Products Distributors Federation on Monday, in addition to Amazon’s (AICPDF).

FRL was one of 19 group companies in the retail, wholesale, logistics, and warehousing segments that were supposed to be transferred to Reliance Retail in August 2020 as part of a 24.713 crore deal. In April, billionaire Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Industries Ltd called off the deal.

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