The Pearl is hardly the most impressive of hotels. Situated in the grimy, backpacker-infested bylanes of Paharganj, New Delhi, it is a far cry from its namesake. Earlier this year, however, it became a rallying point for hoteliers in the area who were frustrated with budget hotel aggregator OYO.
On the morning of 31 July, close to 100 hoteliers gathered at The Pearl and dumped the tablet devices OYO had provided them to manage bookings. In less than an hour, a stack of tablets had piled up, submitted to protest OYO’s alleged non-cooperation in paying hotels their due.
Zero sum game
India’s antitrust watchdog vs OYO-MakeMyTrip puts other platforms on notice
After years of shying away from regulating online marketplaces, the Competition Commission of India will finally take up a case brought against both India’s largest online travel agent and budget hotel aggregator. The outcome of its probe into the two could reverberate through other sectors as well
The Competition Commission of India’s recent order on MMT-GoIbibo and OYO abusing their dominant market positions is a paradigm shift from its past stance
With a market study on e-commerce in the offing, the competition regulator will examine such cases more closely
Along with the Supreme Court’s recent verdict in favour of Meru in the Meru Cabs vs Uber case, it could help rein in India’s large platforms
Even as CCI looks to keep large marketplaces in check, it should follow the lead of Western antitrust regulators that have sought to regulate Big Tech