French regulator fines Google

Google was fined $57 million for not going far enough to get valid user consent to gather data for targeted advertising.

Paul Booth.
Paul Booth.

The international ICT market was fairly quiet last week, with just a handful of smallish acquisitions.

At home, another acquisition by HeroTel and the buyout of Teraco were the main local stories.

Key local news

* A positive trading update from Vodacom.
* Berkshire Partners, a US-based investment firm, acquired a majority stake in Teraco Data Environments. The Permira funds, an existing shareholder, will remain a significant investor alongside Berkshire.
* Entelect, SA's leading software engineering and solutions company, bought a majority stake in Fixx iT, a software engineering and professional services company headquartered in the Netherlands.
* Hero Telecoms purchased BreedeNet, a Worcester-based wireless Internet service provider supplying high-speed Internet, VOIP and Web hosting to homes and businesses across the Western Cape, Northern Cape, Eastern Cape and Free State.
* Skyblu Technologies acquired Altech UEC, Altron's set-top box manufacturing business.
* Naspers made a $1.2 billion investment, for an additional 29.1% stake in Russian classifieds business Avito, taking its ownership to 99.6%.
* Netherlands-based DataManagement Professionals will open an office in Johannesburg before the end of January. Established 10 years ago, the company specialises in secure data management products and services such as storage, backup and archiving solutions to cross-sector organisations.
* MultiChoice Group has released its pre-listing statement in compliance with the JSE Listings Requirements, providing further details about its listing on the JSE, with trading in MCG shares expected to commence on 27 February.
* The appointments of Robert Burger as MD of Huge Telecom, and Hemant Harie as MD of Gabsten Technologies.

Key African news

* Zambia's fourth mobile phone operator Uzi Zambia has confirmed it will launch operations in February.
* The appointments of Mohamed Abdel Bassit as Liquid Telecom's regional CEO for Middle East and West Africa; and Susan M'kandawire Mulikita as CEO of Liquid Telecom Zambia.

Key international news

* Adobe acquired Allegorithmic, maker of Substance, the industry standard for 3D textures and material creation in game and video post-production.
* America Movil bought Telefonica's operations in Guatemala for $333 million and in El Salvador for $315 million.
* Ansys purchased Granta Design, a provider of material information technology, helping its customers manage information about engineering materials such as metals and plastics; and Helic, the industry-leading provider of electromagnetic crosstalk solutions for systems on chips.
* Bridgestone (Japan) acquired Telematics, Tom Tom's fleet management business, for $1.03 billion.
* ePlus bought SLAIT Consulting, an IT consulting and solutions provider with a focus on security advisory and managed services, managed help-desk, specialised IT, staffing, and data centre solutions.
* Microsoft purchased Citus Data, a start-up that has commercialised open source database software called PostgreSQL.
* Solutions II acquired fellow solutions provider Chouinard & Myhre in a deal aimed at expanding the company's reach and its ability to help bring legacy customers' data centres into a more digital world.
* Viacom bought Pluto TV, a free video streaming TV service, for $340 million.
* China has approved a plan to set up a Nasdaq-style board for tech companies in Shanghai aimed at improving their ability to raise funds.

Russia's communication watchdog is opening administrative proceedings against Twitter and Facebook.

* Google has been fined $57 million by a French regulator, the biggest penalty levied yet under a new European privacy law, alleging the search engine giant did not go far enough to get valid user consent to gather data for targeted advertising.
* Russia's communication watchdog is opening administrative proceedings against Twitter and Facebook for failing to explain how they plan to comply with local data laws.
* Google has asked the US Supreme Court to reverse a ruling that resurrected a billion-dollar copyright case brought by Oracle that dates back to 2010.
* Good quarterly numbers from Amphenol (back in the black), ASML Holding NV, Crown Castle International and Xilinx.
* Satisfactory quarterly results from AVX (back in the black), Bharti Infratel, Citrix Systems (back in the black), F5 Networks, Intel (back in the black), Lantronix, Logitech International, OSI (back in the black), PTC, Rogers Communications, STMicroelectronics, TE Connectivity (back in the black), Teledyne Technologies and Tessco Technologies.
* Mediocre quarterly results from SK Hynix and Vodafone (revenue only).
* Mixed quarterly figures from Aspen Technology, Avnet and Comcast, with revenue up but net income down; and from IBM (back in the black), Lam Research (back in the black) and TI, with revenue down but net income up.
* Quarterly losses from Agilysys, Egis Technology, Ericsson and Western Digital.

Research results and predictions

Worldwide:
* Annual shipments of wireless devices for industrial automation applications reached 4.6 million units worldwide in 2018, accounting for approximately 6% of all new connected nodes, according to Berg Insight. Growing at a CAGR of 16.3%, annual shipments are expected to reach 9.9 million in 2023. The installed base of wireless IOT devices in industrial automation reached 21.3 million in 2018.
* The LTE router/gateway market will grow from about $804.2 million in 2018 to $1.9 billion in 2022, at a CAGR of 27.4%, according to IDC.

Stock market changes

* JSE All share index: Up 0.6%
* FTSE100: Down 2.3%
* DAX: Up 0.7%
* NYSE (Dow): Up 0.1%
* S&P 500: Down 0.2%
* Nasdaq: Up 0.1%
* Nikkei225: Up 0.5%
* Hang Seng: Up 1.8%
* Shanghai: Up 0.2%

Look out for

International:
* Vodafone and O2 selling their mast joint venture, Cornerstone Telecommunications Infrastructure.

South Africa:
* Further news regarding the listing of the MultiChoice Group.

Final word

IFI recently released its list of the top 50 US Patent Assignees for 2018. Included in the list are:
* 1: IBM
* 2: Samsung Electronics
* 3: Canon
* 4: Intel
* 5: LG Electronics
* 6: TSMC
* 7: Microsoft
* 8: Qualcomm
* 9: Apple
* 11: Google
* 12: Amazon
* 14: Samsung Display
* 15: Sony
* 16: Huawei Technologies
* 17: BOE Technology Group
* 20: Ericsson

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