The National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) rejects Amazon's plea challenging the decision of fair trade regulator, Competition Commission of India (CCI) to suspend the approval for the e-commerce major's deal with Future Coupons.
The NCLT, comprising of a two-member bench of Justice M Venugopal and Ashok Kumar Mishra, upheld the CCI findings and directed Amazon to pay the penalty of 200 crore imposed by the fair trade regulator within 45 days from Monday.
"This appellate tribunal is in complete agreement" with the CCI, the two-member bench said.
The CCI in December last year reversed its previous approval given by it in 2019 and suspended the decision for Amazon's deal to acquire a 49 per cent stake in Future Coupons Pvt Ltd (FCPL). The reason for the suspension of its previous approval was that Amazon had suppressed information while seeking clearance for the transaction back then, the fair trade regulator had said, and also slapped a fine of 202 crore on the company.
FCPL is a promoter of Future Retail Ltd. (FRL). FRL was part of the 19 group companies operating in retail, wholesale, logistics, and warehousing segments, which were supposed to be transferred to Reliance Retail as part of a 24,713 crore deal announced in August 2020. But that deal was called off by the billionaire Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries Ltd in April after Future Group's secured creditors had rejected the agreement.
NCLAT concluded its hearing in April this year, over Amazon's plea. All parties had filed revised notes of submissions along with relevant citations before the registry. On Monday, apart from Amazon's plea, the appellate tribunal had also reserved the order on two other petitions in the matter, filed by the Confederation of All India Traders (CAIT) and the All India Consumer Products Distributors Federation (AICPDF).