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Google to spend $200m on YouTube settlement

Alphabet's Google will pay up to $200 million to settle an FTC investigation into YouTube's alleged violation of a children's privacy law.
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Further acquisitions by Accenture and Cisco were the top stories of the international ICT market last week.

At home, the imminent listing of Naspers' Prosus in Amsterdam was the main local story.

Key local news

  • Good year-end figures from Stella Capital Partners (back in the black).
  • Positive trading updates from Alaris Holdings, Cartrack Holdings and Mustek.
  • A negative trading update from Metrofile Holdings.
  • IEIT Holdings has established a strategic and joint venture partnership with Cogent that focuses on digital transformation, the fourth industrial revolution and beyond.
  • The JSE has agreed to acquire 74.85% of Link Market Services South Africa from Link Market Services, a company incorporated in Australia.
  • In Amsterdam, Naspers has issued its prospectus for the IPO of Prosus, planned for 11 September.
  • MultiChoice intends to make an offer to shareholders of Phuthuma Nathi Investments (PN1) and Phuthuma Nathi Investments 2 (PN2) to exchange up to 20% of their shares in PN that are listed on the Equity Express Securities Exchange for shares in MCG.
  • A renewed JSE cautionary by EOH.
  • The departure of Mark Taylor, CEO of Reunert subsidiary Nashua.

Key international news

  • Gambia's telecom sector regulator, the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority, has fined three mobile phone operators for failing to comply with SIM card registration law. Africell, Gamcel and Qcell have all been fined a total of $115 000 for reportedly selling SIM cards activated at the point-of-sale to subscribers without registering their identity details.
  • The Communications Authority of Kenya has suspended the planned merger of Airtel Kenya and Telkom Kenya pending the result of the investigation by the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission on how the merger deal was engineered.
  • Canada-based technology company Dynamics Intelligence has announced plans to shut down operations in Nigeria. Following the FBI’s clampdown on Nigerians involved in fraud, the firm is in doubt of its operations in the African country.
  • Rimbo Holding has emerged as the frontrunner in the battle for control of Orange Niger.

Key international news

  • Accenture acquired Fairway Technologies, a provider of engineering services.
  • Cisco bought CloudCherry, which provides predictive analytics, rich customer journey mapping and sophisticated survey capabilities for customers operating contact centres in the cloud or on-premises.
  • ePlus acquired certain assets and liabilities of Innovative Technology Systems & Solutions, a company with deep expertise in managed services, networking, collaboration and security solutions.
  • China-based Luokung Technology, a leading interactive location-based services company, bought eMapgo, a leading navigation electronic map service provider in China.
  • Israeli social casino gaming giant Playtika purchased Finnish mobile game publisher Seriously.
  • RDX acquired Navisite, a leading provider of managed cloud services.
  • SPS Commerce, a leader in retail cloud services, bought SWK Technologies’ MAPADOC EDI division, including all related intellectual property.
  • Syncsort purchased Pitney Bowes’ software solutions unit for $700 million.
  • Verisk acquired Genscape, a global provider of real-time data and intelligence for commodity and energy markets, for $364 million.
  • Temenos bought Kony, a US SaaS digital banking company, for $580 million.
  • A group that includes Lightspeed Venture Partners, Silver Lake Waterman and Sapphire Ventures, made a $248 million investment in ThoughtSpot, an analytics start-up.
  • Globalfoundries (GF) has filed multiple lawsuits in the US and Germany, alleging that semiconductor manufacturing technologies used by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company infringe 16 GF patents.
  • InterDigital, a mobile and video technology research and development company, has filed patent infringement action in the UK against Lenovo.
  • Alphabet's Google will spend up to $200 million to settle an FTC investigation into YouTube's alleged violation of a children's privacy law.
  • Anthony Levandowski, a pioneer in self-driving car technology, has been criminally charged with stealing trade secrets from his former employer Google before joining rival Uber Technologies.
  • EU regulators are checking Google for Jobs to see if the company unfairly favours its fast-growing tool for searching job listings.
  • Facebook is being probed by Hamburg’s data protection authority over transcribing audio from users of its services, adding to an investigation into Google’s automatic speech assistant.
  • Sony is selling its 5% stake in Olympus back to the Japanese medical equipment maker for $763 million.
  • US investigators are looking into episodes in which Huawei was accused of stealing intellectual property from people and companies, and how it recruited employees from competitors.
  • US officials are seeking to block an undersea cable backed by Google, Facebook and a Chinese partner, in a national security review that could rewrite the rules of Internet connectivity between the US and China.
  • Excellent quarterly results from ZTE (back in the black).
  • Very good quarterly figures from Autodesk (back in the black) and Veeva Systems.
  • Very good half-year numbers from Wus Printed Circuit.
  • Good quarterly numbers from Daktronics, Isra Vision, Methode Electronics and OSI Systems.
  • Good half-year figures from Bouygues Telecom.
  • Satisfactory quarterly results from Dell Technologies (back in the black) and Tech Data.
  • Mediocre quarterly results from American Software and Semtech.
  • Mediocre half-year figures from SMIC.
  • Mixed quarterly figures from Momo and Presidio, with revenue up but net income down; and from Partner Communications, with revenue down but net income up.
  • Quarterly losses from Ambarella, Anaplan, Bilibili, Box, Elastic NV, HPE, iClick Interactive Asia, Jianpu Technology, Marvell Technology Group, Nutanix, Okta, SeaChange International, Workday, Yext and Zuora.
  • Half-year losses from Ananti Communications, Bigblu Broadband, Etherstack, Frontier Smart Technologies Group and Megvii.
  • The appointments of Penny Herscher as chairman of Lumentum; Shih-Wei Sun as CEO of Wuhan Xinxin Semiconductor Manufacturing; and Abhijit Talwalkar as chairman of Lam Research.
  • The retirement of John Donovan, CEO of AT&T Communications; and Stephen Newbury, chairman of Lam Research.
  • The departure of Charles Kao, CEO of Wuhan Xinxin Semiconductor Manufacturing.
  • A planned IPO on the Frankfurt Exchange by TeamViewer, which develops software for collaboration and remote desktop access.

Anthony Levandowski, a pioneer in self-driving car technology, has been criminally charged with stealing trade secrets.

  • An IPO filing for Hong Kong from Megvii Technology, a Chinese AI firm that is backed by Alibaba.
  • IPO filings for Nasdaq from Datadog, the leader in cloud-based infrastructure monitoring; Peloton Interactive, the fitness start-up known for on-demand workout programs on its exercise bikes; and Ping Identity, an identity security vendor.

Research results and predictions

South Africa:

  • According to GfK SA’s Weekly Monitor, smartphone revenue grew 3.9% year-on-year in the second quarter of 2019 and unit sales dropped 4.9% to just under 3 million units in the same timeframe, continuing the same trend seen in the previous two quarters.

EMEA/Africa:

  • The Africa mobile phone market declined 1.8% QOQ in Q2 2019, according to IDC. Overall shipments for the quarter totalled 52.2 million units, down from 53.1 million units in Q119. Feature phones accounted for 58.3% of the market, with shipments declining 3.7% QOQ, while smartphone shipments increased 1% over the same period to account for a 41.7% share.

Worldwide:

  • Global sales of smartphones to end-users declined 1.7% in Q219, totalling 368 million units, according to Gartner.
  • The enterprise and automotive Internet of things market will grow to 5.8 billion endpoints in 2020, a 21% increase from 2019. By the end of 2019, 4.8 billion endpoints are expected to be in use, up 21.5% from 2018.
  • The worldwide hardcopy peripherals market declined 5.6% year-over-year, with more than 22.2 million units shipped in 2Q19, according to IDC. Both inkjet and laser unit shipments showed negative year-over-year growth in 2Q19, down 6.6% and 3.5%, respectively.

Stock market changes

  • JSE All share index: Up 2.1%
  • FTSE100: Up 1.6%
  • DAX: Up 2.8%
  • NYSE (Dow): Up 3%
  • S&P 500: Up 2.8%
  • Nasdaq: Up 2.7%
  • Nikkei225: Down 0.1%
  • Hang Seng: Down 1.7%
  • Shanghai: Down 0.4%

Look out for

International:

  • BT Group is looking to sell off its remaining business portfolio in the Republic of Ireland, in a deal worth around €300 million.
  • McAfee filing for an IPO.

South Africa:

  • Further developments at Cell C and EOH.

Final word

Inc magazine recently published its 2019 list of the 5 000 fastest growing private companies in America. In the top 50, from a technology perspective, are:

  • 8: Connected Solutions Group, a company that delivers a full range of planning, procurement, deployment, support and management services for wireless-related hardware facilitating data usage on cellular networks.
  • 22: SD3IT, a firm that offers IT services for companies looking to outsource IT services, with specialisation in network and data centre services, cyber security assessments, market research and legal compliance.
  • 23: ConvertKit, a software company that makes e-mail marketing software for artists, authors, photographers, YouTubers, teachers and other creators.
  • 24: Printify, a provider of print on-demand services for e-commerce merchants.
  • 25: Awardco, a provider of employee-recognition software that integrates with Amazon Business, creating powerful recognition and incentive programmes for organisations of all sizes.
  • 29: LumenAd, a company that develops advertising management software that automates cross-channel campaign workflows for marketing and media professionals.
  • 40: Allata, a company that offers IT strategy and bespoke development consulting software services.
  • 46: Beeswax, a software firm that develops advertising software to assist brands with recognition, growth and marketing strategies.
  • 48: phData, an IT management company that provides services with a focus on automation to design and build data products and platforms, along with machine learning systems.
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