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These tactics help you stop the great resignation and retain your talent pool

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Since the great resignation that occurred during Covid-19, retaining staff has been more challenging than ever. It’s not just the customer, but the employee is now the king too. Reducing employee turnover is the focus of many organizations around the globe.

Employee turnover is the rate of employees leaving the company. It could be due to any reason, voluntary or involuntary. Employees fired for misconduct are also included in the employee turnover rate. 

Acquiring an employee is not easy. It involves a lot of money, time, and effort. After they join the company you also invest time and money in training them and giving them all sorts of benefits. When you have invested so much into your employees, their resignation can cause a serious impact on the growth of your company.

In this post, we shall discuss some methods that will help you retain employees and stop the great resignation. 

Give them the right pay 

The payment or salary is what you pay to your employees for their talent, time and efforts invested in the company.

Most of the time employees leave the company because they are unhappy with the pay. They feel they are underpaid and not valued by the company. Another reason could be that other companies are providing a higher sum of money for a similar job profile. When such discrepancies occur, it leads to dissatisfaction and finally resignation. 

It is always a better idea to pay your employees according to their position and the current pay for the same position in the market. 

A salary hike is another aspect that can help you retain talent. If they don’t see the scope of their salary and position increasing in the future, they’ll gladly move to a place where they can climb ranks faster.

Improve your onboarding process

According to a study, new recruit retention is up to 82%, and productivity is up to 70%, in companies with a good onboarding procedure. An onboarding program is like a movie trailer. We see the trailer and then decide whether to watch the film or not. In the same manner, whether the employee will stay in your company or not depends on how good your onboarding program is.

Using software for the onboarding process can be of huge help. You can automate most of the tedious and often boring things like the initial paperwork. Moreover, you could use an employee onboarding LMS for conducting an efficient training program online. Most people prefer self-paced learning these days and an LMS can do just that for you. Moreover, you can personalize the training experience on the software. 

An engaging and entertaining onboarding experience will make your employees to stay with you for a longer period of time.

Set clear job expectations 

It is not very uncommon to see incidents where the employees leave the job in the first 3-4 months. It is because they were not expecting the kind of tasks you assigned them, or they were not made aware of the company policies and procedures clearly. It is important that your HR clarifies these doubts as soon as possible. When people know what they are signing up for and if they get exactly the same, they are happy. 

Recognize their work 

It is every employee’s dream to get recognized for all the efforts they have put into a project. Praise from the employer or maybe a reward keeps them motivated to maintain a long relationship with the organization. This appreciation could be verbal, a written statement, or a reward. You could give them a star employee award or an incentive, it is up to you how you make them feel special and recognized. These small rewards and appreciations go a long way. This is also a method to improve job satisfaction. 

Find the right employee 

Sometimes the recruiter is the one to blame. Recruiters should have a clear idea of exactly what they are looking for. Take time to find a person who can add value to your company and can also fit into the company culture. The amount of time a candidate has spent in comparable jobs at previous companies might be a good indicator of how long they’ll stay at your organization. Hiring the wrong person is an utter waste of time, money and effort.

Flexibility 

Give a little freedom to your employees. You could offer flexible working hours. This means that your employees will work for 9 hours but they can decide when to complete these 9 hours during the day. Now more than ever, flexibility is going to be a crucial criterion for employee satisfaction and retention. It is because everyone has been working from home for the past couple of years and have enjoyed some sort of flexibility in their work schedules. 

Open communication 

When people are able to freely share their views and ideas with one another, we call it open communication. You may promote open communication in your company by encouraging all workers to share their ideas and comments. 

Having open communication will help you forge a strong bond between you and your employees. When such healthy relationships are developed, employees will actually love working for you and will not consider leaving the job easily. 

Moreover, there is a lot of scope for improvement if you just allow your employees to speak openly about their problems and queries. Employees feel a bit of hesitation to approach their senior managers, but a culture with open communication can remove this hesitation. 

Open communication shall facilitate better teamwork and faster completion of tasks. 

Develop their career paths 

Define their career paths clearly. Let them have an idea of all the opportunities for development you will be offering them. It could be new positions for them to use their skills or increment in their salary. This shall also include their personal growth in the company like learning a new skill for a new position or opportunities to sharpen the already existing skills. 

Conclusion 

The key to avoiding great resignation is employee satisfaction. When the employee is happy, your business will see an upward J curve in its growth. Try to understand their concerns and their points of dissatisfaction and improve your company culture based on this research. You can do the things we recommended above or try other innovative methods to retain talent in your organization. 

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Why the W Series Should Be On Your Radar in 2022

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For many years, most sports have been dominated by men, and no one ever imagined that sports betting on horse racing or Formula 1 (F1) racing would include female participants. However, times have changed, and the sports sector has opened up to women, allowing them to demonstrate their skills in the field to the rest of the world.

We’re going to look at a specific industry today, the racing world, and see what to expect in the W series in 2022.

What’s the W Series?

To understand what to look for in this particular event, we must first understand it. The W event is a single-seater racing competition for women only. The event’s first season took place, with twenty drivers competing in six events.

The W series announced its continuous association with Formula 1, including the eight Grand Prix races it’ll compete in 2022, including this events’ first-ever event in Asia. There are 15 drivers competing for the chance to win the race.

We’ll see them race at five new tracks during their third on-track season, which involves a round at Suzuka Circuit in October throughout the weekend of the Japanese Grand Prix. In 100 days, the season will kick off in support of F1’s debut Miami Grand Prix, which will take place in May at Miami’s brand-new Hard Rock Stadium complex Gardens, Florida, USA.

What To Expect From the Event in 2022

CEO Catherine Bond Muir said: “W Series’ expansion continues with the announcement of our 2022 race calendar, which will see us visit more circuits and countries in a single season than ever before”.

“I am delighted that we will be returning to the Circuit of the Americas, Silverstone and Hungary in 2022, and excited to take the W Series to Miami, Spain, France, Mexico and Japan for the first time – the latter representing another landmark achievement for the W Series as we make our debut in Asia”.

“We have always stated our intention to make the series a truly global movement and this calendar is the next step towards achieving that.” 

Calendar for the 2022 W Series:

  • Miami, USA May 6th-8th, 2022.
  • Barcelona, Spain, May 20th-22nd, 2022
  • Silverstone, UK, July 1st-3rd, 2022.
  • Le Castellet, France, July 22nd-24th, 2022.
  • Budapest, Hungary, July 29th-31st, 2022
  • Suzuka, Japan, October 7th-9th, 2022
  • Austin, Texas, USA, October 21st-23rd, 2022
  • Mexico City, Mexico, October 28th-30th, 2022

Each round’s schedule and session times will be released in due time.

Finally, women have been breaking the norm in the sports world, which we all admire. The addition of new countries to this year’s list will attract a broader audience, which we’re eager to see.

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Elon Musk puts Twitter acquisition deal on hold, indefinitely!

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Elon Musk Twitter Investment

The drama related to the Twitter acquisition by Elon Musk is far from over. In the latest, and the biggest as well, twist Elon Musk has put the Twitter acquisition on hold.

Citing the fake, spam and bot accounts as a reason Musk has tweeted that the Twitter buyout deal is halted, without giving any timeline on hinting at the next course of action.

Musk tweeted an old article from Reuters, which addressed Twitter’s declaration of fever than 5% of total accounts as spam or fake.

Twitter currently has 229 million monetizable users. The micro-blogging website doesn’t consider only the monetizable users as active ones. It means that nearly 12-13 million accounts could be responsible for the fallout of the $44 billion deal.

Surprisingly, the reasoning and style of Musk backing off from the deal seems quite unusual.

While Elon Musk has all the authority to take a final call, the cited reason looks very unconvincing. A filing submitted by Twitter more than two months ago clearly indicates that there is a more troubling reason for Musk to halt the Twitter buyout deal, albeit temporarily.

As per Twitter’s own declaration, only 5% of the Twitter’s total monetizable user base are either spam or fake accounts. However, many users believe that Musk is citing a lame excuse in a bid to back off the deal that he closed abruptly and in a hush-hush manner.

Interestingly, the latest move made by Parag Agrawal, CEO – Twitter Inc., seems to be related to Musk’ decision. Did Agrawal know about the bomb just dropped by Elon Musk? It’s now a question that needs to be reevaluated. Agrawal has fired two top executives from the company and seized all the hiring.

What is Musk really up to? It is difficult to guess at the moment. But his decision may prove fatal for Twitter once the trading starts today. How big dent Elon Musk’s decision would make on Twitter, only time will tell.

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Twitter CEO surprises everyone by showing doors to top executives and seizing hiring

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Twitter’s top leadership is going through a major reshuffle. But unlike making silent moves, executives have started expressing their anguish on Twitter itself, albeit choosing their words carefully.

It all started with Kayvon Beykpour, a consumer product leader who revealed on Twitter that Parag Agrawal, the current CEO, asked him to quit as he wants to steer the team in another direction.

Beykpour wasn’t the only one; Agarwal fired Bruce Falck, General Manager of revenue and head of products for its business side, as well. Falck first announced the same in his tweet, but later deleted it, hinting at the level of pressure from the management side.

Instead of letting the issue pass by silently, Parag decided to reply to both of them on Thursday night. Parag Agrawal replied to both threads on Thursday night, thanking his co-workers and expressing appreciation for their hard work during their tenure with the micro-blogging platform.

Jay Sullivan will succeed Bruce Falck to take the charge as head of revenue and head of product.

The development left many surprised, rather stunned; At a time when the future of CEO, Parag Agarwal, remains uncertain with the company such moves have given rise to many speculations. These developments are taking time parallel as Elon Musk continues to move forward with his all-cash $44 Billion Twitter acquisition deal. However, he is yet to take over the company’s control in his hands.

Ideally, during such sales, an under-acquired company freezes all hiring and firing activities.

In a memo – obtained by The verge – written by Agrawal to employees he stated, “At 2020’s beginning, it was decided to invest aggressively in order to deliver big growth audience and revenue. We did not reach intermediate milestones that allow confidence in these goals as a company.”

Beykpour, the company’s product leader, was also GM of Consumer. He has been responsible for many of the major features and design improvements over the past few years.

It’s an unexpected move by Agrawal who recently reorganized his executive staff after the departure of Twitter’s engineering and design leads. This leaves Beykpour at top of consumer products.

Beykpour joined Twitter in 2015 when it acquired Periscope the live streaming company that he co-founded. Beykpour was promoted to head of consumer product at Twitter in 2018 and oversaw a remarkable period of feature launches. Twitter decided to pull curtains down on Periscope last year.

Bruce Falck thanked his fellow engineers and stated, “After all, it’s what you do that counts: We upgraded our prediction, attribution, and billing systems and many other systems, significantly improving our reliability, scalability, and stability.”

Although Falck’s work may not be as well-known to users as Beykpour’s, it has been reported that Twitter is looking into subscriptions to decrease its dependence on advertising revenue. Probably learning from Facebook’s mistake.

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Why using LinkedIn for business must be your top priority in 2022

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linkedin for business

LinkedIn is one of the most impactful social media networks in 2021. It’s designed to attract more attention to your business and to help the employers and the employees meet.

The number of LinkedIn users has surpassed 740 million people recently which makes it the largest online professional network in the world. While LinkedIn has a lot more potential for personal brand building among the professional circle, It makes a huge audience for your business promotion as well. In fact, the role of social media in business promotion is immense, regardless of whether it’s LinkedIn, TikTok, or Instagram.

So why won’t you use such an opportunity and tell about your brand there?

This guide will take you through the steps to follow on LinkedIn to make your business successful in 2022.

Create Your Business Profile Page

The first and essential step to take is signing up for LinkedIn. A profile on LinkedIn is a must for any startup or small company, let alone business giants. Your profile page is your opportunity to become recognizable. Besides, it lets you advertise your company’s new products and services to your target audience.

This process is simple and fast. Just follow the guidelines given on the social media platform and set the information about your company. Complete the profile page, adding the details about your company size, the sphere of business it belongs to, the number of employees, and other things related to your company’s activity. Your company description will finalize this process. 

Identify Your Company/Brand

It’s no news that the logo and slogan are the things that make you stand out in the background of other services. These are the essential business elements that make you recognizable and unique.

Set the logo for your profile photo. Uploading a cover photo is also essential as it can give more information as to what your company is engaged in and what your general message is. Be laconic with the visual content you use for your profile photos to make them do their job properly.

Note: the higher the percent of your profile completion is, the more views on LinkedIn your business profile can get.

Fill your LinkedIn Page with Content

The main goal any business follows when creating its profile on LinkedIn is to make people engaged in whatever you want to tell them, especially if it will have an impact on the rate of your sales or website conversion. Therefore, the content you post on your profile page should be well-written, meaningful, and useful. Usually, the companies attract a new audience by giving some useful tips, posting ‘how-to’ videos, telling the story of your victories and failures, or sharing some other relevant information related to the sphere the company works in. 

The crucial role in the effectiveness of your LinkedIn page plays its visual part. The creation of quality visual content needs time and effort, but the game is definitely worth the candles. You can look up some ideas and advice about how to create quality visual content in Movavi Blog, Wistia Blog, HubSpot, and other similar resources.

By the way, when working with social media, you’d better publish new posts relying on a schedule. Regular publications keep your readers engaged, and don’t let the subscribers forget about your company. The publication of new posts on schedule (e.g. twice or three times a week) makes your followers wait for another portion of information.

Don’t Ignore Stories

One of the recent LinkedIn updates made it possible to create stories we are all so much used to on Facebook and Instagram. Storytelling is a powerful instrument in the hands of a person working in the business sphere. By making stories on LinkedIn, you stimulate the formation of an emotional bond between you and your target audience. You can share the behind-the-scenes life of your business, helping your readers get more involved in what you do. Besides, stories are a great solution for questions and answers sessions. These are only some of the pros of making stories on LinkedIn, but there are many more (you can look them up here).

Attract Followers

The more contacts you set up on LinkedIn, the bigger audience will see your posts. To increase the number of followers fast, you should send invitations to all your current and past connections. Involve your employees in the growth of your LinkedIn audience. Tag people in your posts to make them visible not only for your followers but for theirs as well. 

Becoming a part of LinkedIn groups or creating your own is another effective way to make your page content visible. It’s also crucial for your interaction with other businesses and finding new people for your team.

Another way to raise your subscription rates is to mention your LinkedIn page on other social media pages you have. Businesses also often send email newsletters to their clients asking them to join their social networks. 

Use Hashtags

A hashtag is a thing that can make you visible to more people. The thing is that some LinkedIn users follow certain hashtags, and even if they are not on the list of your subscribers, they will see your post due to the hashtag you add to it. Besides, the search-by-the-hashtag feature on LinkedIn will bring your post to the search list. You can either use the hashtags that are offered automatically after you upload an image or a video or create your own. The latter should better be combined with the hashtags popular in the category you are posting. 

Monitor Your LinkedIn Page Efficiency

There’s no point in any activity if it doesn’t bring any result. When starting a business profile on LinkedIn, monitoring the efficacy of content you publish and the growth of the number of your subscribers are the two crucial things you have to keep an eye on. Analyze which of your posts get more feedback from the followers and which fail to attract their attention. By doing this, you can change your strategy and adapt your content to the demand of your readers.

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Pay cut, No promotion and more penalties: Be ready to pay the price of working from home

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work from home consequences for employees

Until last year companies were advocating the benefits of work from home (WFH). However, the table has turned as the pandemic era begins to end. Managers believe that fully remote work will soon end. Some even warn of severe consequences for employees who refuse to fall in line.

According to a recent survey, 60% of managers agreed that a return to work is possible in the near future. But what’s more interesting is the fact that 75% of managers didn’t shy away from accepting that they want employees to be back in the office.

Even though 73% of managers stated that employee productivity and engagement have improved or remained the same during the work from the home era, the desire to bring back workers is not uncommon. Remote management was a major cause of burnout for 69% of managers.

The study was conducted by GoodHire, a leading employee verification service provider. 3,500 managers in the US participate in the study to understand managers’ views on work from home and return to office demand.

Employees, however, are not getting along with managers’ demands. Multiple incidents are being about employees resigning from their jobs are being reported. From Apple to small startups, employees have stated resisting the company’s demand to return back to the office.

Managers believe that employees’ attitude is unscrupulous, and didn’t hesitate in issuing warnings.

Approximately 77% of managers said, rather warned, that remote employees would face severe consequences if they chose to stay away from the office. This could include firings, reductions in pay, and losing promotion opportunities. Particularly, around half of managers who participated in the study stated that they would reduce the wages of remote employees who are not paying heed to the company’s demand – an action that could backfire in an intense labor market where salaries are so high.

Experts, on the other hand, recommend that managers seek feedback from employees to defuse the situation by striking outbalance rather than imposing harsh punishments.

Only 23% of managers stated that they would allow employees to work remotely full-time if their company requires them to return to the office.

“The survey results highlight the disconnect between managers’ attitudes towards remote workers and their team’s productivity in remote work environments. “Clearly, managers are struggling,” stated Max Wesman, COO – GoodHire.

He advocates that leaders need to support their managers, implement the right tools and programs, and provide them with the training and tools they need to make hybrid and remote work arrangements a win-win situation for all parties involved.

It’s a well-known fact that working conditions that are satisfactory to the majority of employees will result in increased productivity and retention which is crucial at a time when the industry is witnessing a talent war across all roles and sectors.

Managers also have a split opinion on whether employees want to return to the office full-time. 51% of participating managers believe that employees would like to, and 49% are unsure or do not think that employees wish to return. 60% of respondents agreed that incentives are a great way to encourage employees to return to work. Besides, additional perks like happy hours, snacks, and free lunches are other motivational factors.

In the last few months, few companies have started allowing employees to bring their kids with them, but only 12% of respondents said that they would be open to offering child care at work in order to encourage workers to return.

This study underlines the findings of other surveys which show that there is still a divide between top-ranking employees and company leaders regarding remote work. According to another survey of 2,300 senior management professionals by a talent solution company Robert Half International Inc, 66% of senior managers want their teams to work on-site full-time once the Covid-19 pandemic restrictions are lifted. Only one-third of those senior managers supported long-term hybrid schedules.

According to another Robert Half survey, 50% of remote workers would consider another job opportunity – that would allow work from home – if they had to work in the office full-time.

So, how lucrative perks, promotions, and salary hikes would be for employees to give up their demand for work from home? Another study revealed that employees prefer remote work over promotion.

Employees have sensed the market opportunities well enough. Amid the ongoing talent war in all the major markets worldwide, retaining existing employees – especially top performers – are the biggest challenge for companies, let alone hiring new talent. Many companies don’t want to put employees in an uncomfortable situation in current market conditions and have just extended work from home period, instead of giving blanket approval for an indefinite period.

On the other hand, reports about employees picking up multiple jobs or gigs alongside their full-time jobs are painting quite a concerning scenario. While many employees are successfully able to juggle multiple jobs, it’s against the employment policies in most companies.

Data and Information security is another big challenge to tackle for companies in work-from-home scenarios. The leak of business-critical information or trade secrets is keeping companies worried all the time.

Despite all sorts of concerns, high-paying remote jobs are increasing faster than expected. As of the first quarter of 2022, 24% of professional job listings advertised remote work. Remote work is being used by some companies to attract talented engineers from larger urban centers as well.

The tug of war between managers and employees is nothing new, but this time it’s new turf. While employees believe that companies are in no situation to push their demands, employers expect their employees to be more ethical and professional while rejecting companies’ requirements.

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Why has Indians given up on Crypto: An effect of proposed 28% GST?

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cryptocurrency india

Nothing is going in favor of crypto enthusiasts, especially those in India. The cryptocurrency industry has been affected by India’s regressive taxation policies for virtual digital assets (VDAs) since April 1.

The government is now reportedly considering levying 28% goods and services tax for virtual coins, by putting it in the basket with Casino, lottery, and betting.

India has already imposed a 30% tax on all earnings from the transfer of crypto asset transactions and non-fungible tokens besides deducting 1% TDS above a threshold. Gifts made in crypto or digital assets are also subject to tax now.

The aggressive approach toward Crypto earnings without granting a legal status by the Indian government has reciprocal effects.

Trading volumes on India’s top cryptocurrency exchanges have dropped significantly since the tax regime was implemented last month. According to data from CoinMarketCap and Nomics (a data firm), WazirX suffered a 72% drop, ZebPay fell 59%, CoinDCX dropped 52%, and BitBns 41% respectively.

Disappointed by the moves of the Indian government many exchanges have either shifted their base or are in the process of doing that. WazirX recently announced that it has already shifted the base to Dubai, which is fast emerging as the favorite destination for blockchain, cryptocurrency, and startup entrepreneurs.

“It would be wonderful if there were discussions to keep VDA taxation in line with India’s treatment of regular financial instruments, and/or evaluate different uses of tokens when making decisions about crypto taxation,” Aritra Sarkhel, director for public policy at WazirX said.

Sarkhel believes that it is essential to examine global jurisdiction arguments related to such tax.

In its annual crypto tax report, PwC noted that the classification of cryptocurrencies in local law will determine tax rules for capital gains. Therefore, each transaction should be evaluated individually.

The volatility in the crypto market is the biggest concern for everyone. While the government is yet to give crypto a legal status in India, the earnings from cryptocurrencies have attracted the eyeballs of government officials. There was also a huge uproar when the government announced its plan to levy tax on Crypto gains without granting any legal status to safeguard the interest of investors and crypto traders.

The proposed tax on crypto in India is not the only concern for crypto traders and investors in India. Billions of dollars have gone down the drain due to the recent crash in the crypto market. In less than two months, the global cryptocurrency market cap has tanked from $2.14 trillion to $1.22 trillion. Bitcoin has lost nearly 60% of its value in the last 6 months, trading at $28,606 now.

The rising number of scams and frauds related to cryptocurrency is another area of concern.

The tanked market cap, crashed prices and worrisome decline in transaction volume clearly indicate that a sizeable number of crypto traders and crypto enthusiasts in India have started distancing away themselves from cryptocurrency – at least for time being, if not permanently.

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Uber strengthening its India presence by hiring 500 techies in India by the end of 2022

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Uber hiring 500 techies

Is Uber one of your dream companies to work for? Are you keeping a close eye on new jobs at Uber India? If the answer is yes, then you must pay close attention to the new announcement made by Uber India today.

Today, Uber India has announced that it will hire 500 more techies by the end of 2022 to strengthen its presence in India. The app-based mobility and delivery company currently has more than 1,000 tech professionals of a strong workforce in Bengaluru and Hyderabad. Overall, there are nearly 2,500 people on the payroll of Uber India.

In 2021, Uber added 250 engineers to its India team.

Labeling India as “a key market for the company”, Uber has charted a clear path to profitability in India by investing more in the two tech centers in the country.

“Uber is looking for the best-in-class engineers, data scientists, and program managers to join its global engineering and product teams, with the aim of ‘Building locally, and scaling globally’. We are excited about the possibilities that a rapidly evolving mobility space presents, and will continue to lead innovations for our customers across the world,” said Manikandan Thangarathnam, Senior Director – Engineering, Uber.

The company has planned an attractive compensation plan to attract talents in India. Without revealing many beans about it, Uber emphasized on fact that the company is leaving no stone unturned to remain one of the favorite places to work for.

In 2021, Uber was recognized among the safest workplace for women in India at the PoSH Awards® 2021.

The hiring in India is a part of the global expansion plan, apparently. The company has been increasing the number of employees at all of its technology centers around the world, including the US, Canada, and Latin America as well as at its India centers.

Uber’s opened up a new facility at its Bengaluru tech center earlier this week in the presence of CN Ashwath, the state minister of IT.

Uber’s Bengaluru and Hyderabad centers are responsible for handling critical functions such as rider engineering and Uber Eats engineering, Infratech, data, maps, Uber for Business, and fintech.

Uber has started looking beyond four-wheelers in a bid to easy commute challenges. After a successful pilot run in Delhi Uber is now planning to put Uber Buses on the roads of other metro cities in India as well. At present, Uber Buses are plying on the roads of Delhi, India, and Cairo, Egypt.

In 2014 Uber started its journey in India from a bungalow in Jubilee Hills in Hyderabad. In the last eight years, it has recorded phenomenal growth and has now established the second-largest tech center in India after its US facilities.

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LIC IPO: The lukewarm response from foreign investors turn grey market premium in negative

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LIC IPO News

The initial excitement towards LIC IPO has vaporized. Ahead of the listing scheduled for May 17, 2022, the grey market premium (GMP) of Life Insurance Corp. (LIC) shares turned negative on Wednesday, seeding a sense of fear and disappointment among those investors who have applied for LIC IPO in anticipation of huge listing gain.

An unnamed trader said that the LIC GMP was Rs 93-95 per share at its peak. Then it began tumbling down. On May 5, it was trading at Rs 8 to Rs 10 per share. He said it was volatile and had a downward trend between May 6-10. Now, from Rs 8-9 a share, it has fallen down to negative Rs 15 per share on Wednesday.

Because of lackluster responses from foreign investors, the GMP has been steadily falling from its peak. The LIC IPO was mainly subscribed by domestic institutional buyers and retail investors. Participation from foreign investors was limited though.

investors were also concerned about volatility, which was triggered by concerns about tightening norms by the global central banks due to higher inflation.

Although the valuation is lower than peers, it is still positive. However, analysts are concerned by losses of Rs 6,028 crore, declining market share, weak online presence, and the perception that not all decisions made by the largest life insurance company in the country are in line with shareholder interests.

The government will raise Rs 20,500 crore through the sale of 3.5 percent of its stake in India’s largest insurance company. The share sale was opened on May 4 and closed on May 9. Allotments will take place on May 12, and shares will be credited on May 16 to Demat accounts.

LIC has floated its IPO at the price range of Rs 902-949 per share, but it has reduced its issue size by 60% because of poor market conditions.

The IPO was a pure offering for the sale of 221.37 million shares. The firm reserved 59.29 million shares for the anchor investor portion. 22.14 million shares are reserved for existing policyholders while 1.58 million shares are set aside for employees. QIB is at 98.83 million.

LIC IPO was oversubscribed nearly 3 times.

“The IPO was priced quite reasonably. However, volatile market sentiments disturbed the mood of investors. We would have seen much higher subscription across all investor categories, if market sentiments remained stable,” said Manan Doshi co-founder, UnlistedArena.com

Manan’s concerns are quite justified; The volatile environment in the market, the low subscription, and the large issue size are all factors that lead to a lot of speculation, skepticism, and fear of uncertainty despite the offer being attractive.

LIC is not the only stock failing to impress the grey market. The GMP of Delhivery Ltd traded at Rs 8-9 apiece, Venus Pipes & Tubes Ltd was Rs 40-42 apiece, and Prudent Corp Advisory services Ltd Rs 34-36 apiece.

May 17, 2022, is going to be decisive as a lot more depends on the listing performance of LIC stock during the early days. Any setback will almost kill all future prospects of upcoming IPOs.

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SoftBank’s bets gone all wrong: Highest ever loss in Q1 2022

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Softbank’s Masayoshi Son, a billionaire who is known for his aggressive bets on tech startups, is set to break another record, albeit an unpleasant one. SoftBank Group Corp.’s Vision Fund investment division may have lost a humongous amount of money in the March quarter, the highest ever since its existence. The company is all set to report earnings on Thursday.

In the March quarter, an estimated $18.6 billion was lost by the world’s largest tech fund on its public portfolio. Kirk Boodry, an analyst from Redex Research, who writes on SmartKarma, says that it’s quite surprising as the loss is more than the $18.3 billion drop in the fiscal second quarter. Boodry estimates that this would result in a loss of $10 billion for the Vision Fund unit, taking into account SoftBank’s stakes in each fund.

This is a dramatic reversal of what Son announced last year in Tokyo when he said SoftBank had made more money than any Japanese giant. His company, which he founded 40 years ago, made a net profit of $17.7 billion at that time. This surpasses Japan’s heavyweights like Toyota Motor Corp. or NTT Corp..

SoftBank’s fiscal year starts on 01 April and ends on March 31.

Boodry believes that the performance is not normal as it could have a far-reaching impact. He expressed his concerns towards investors and markets that are bound to become anxious.

To date, SoftBank has launched two Vision Funds, and both the funds have been hard hit by plummeting tech valuations amid the rise of global interest rates and China tightening its regulatory control on the industry. The Vision Fund has been hit hard by the collapse of the tech market in South Korea and China. South Korea’s Coupang and China’s Didi Global posted their worst quarterly share-price declines of 40% and 50%, respectively.

The Vision Fund suffered its largest loss, $6.32 billion, during the second quarter of fiscal 2012. This was due to global stock market crashes. However, in the following quarter, the unit returned to profitability by earning nearly $836 million during the three-month period ending Dec. 31.

In the end, it will also matter how SoftBank values its vast number of privately held companies in its portfolio. All eyes will be set on ByteDance Ltd. which runs the popular TikTok short-video platform and India’s OYO Hotels.

Market experts are not very optimistic about the company’s performance in the quarters to come. There is less visibility in this section of the portfolio, especially at Vision Fund 2, where many of these investments have been made on startups that are either very small or at an earlier stage. However, SoftBank will likely suffer significant losses in its private portfolio.

The plunging global stock market is another area of concern for SoftBank. The company’s business model is being affected by the sharp decline in the global stock markets. By grouping Vision Fund, Son repositioned the model into an investment holding company in 2016. However, the company face a huge blow after a series of scandals and blunders, mainly from WeWork Inc. and Wirecard AG, came to light which led to international scrutiny.

Son’s reputation has been damaged by rising concerns about further drops in the valuation of tech companies that are a part of the portfolio. They also have raised concerns about the business’ sustainability. Another factor that has fueled market anxiety is the lack of transparency about how much assets of the funds are pledged to banks and various financial institutions.

Amir Anvarzadeh, of Asymmetric Advisors, wrote that Softbank’s entire business structure depends on “ever-rising stock markets” specifically in tech stocks. This is what is driving the current market selloff. He said that the bear market is making this “fundamental flaw more obvious.”

According to Nomura Securities Co. analyst Daisaku Massuno, the Vision Fund lost money on 32 of 34 public holdings last quarter. The major portfolio companies that drove the humongous loss were South Korea’s Coupang ($5.4 billion), Singapore’s Grab Holdings Ltd. ($2.4 billion), China’s Didi ($2.4 billion), India’s Paytm ($1.3 billion), and the U.S. DoorDash Inc. ($1 billion).

Boodry estimates that the unrealized losses in the public portfolio ranged from $37 billion to $38 billion for fiscal 2021. The public portfolio companies are not doing well either as they have fallen more than half off their highs.

Interestingly, it’s all on paper mostly. SoftBank’s losses are on papers similar to the profits reported a year ago. The company’s transformation to an investment holding company means that it must log mark-to-market values for its holdings. Warren Buffett never gets impressed with it and he always argued that such quarterly figures for investment companies like his Berkshire Hathaway are almost meaningless.

SoftBank’s last quarter could still be a stumbling block for Son as he tries to reinvent and establish himself as the most distinguished venture capitalist in the world.

Son’s Vision Fund initiative was built on his track record of picking startups. This included a bet on China’s e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., which became one of the most successful venture transactions of all time, and attracts the eyeballs of many HNIs and VCs. Alas, that deal is now in disrepute with Beijing’s crackdown against Jack Ma’s empire which has resulted in erasing more than 70% of Alibaba’s value since October 2020.

A lot can be understood from the performance of the Nasdaq 100, which is a key benchmark for tech shares. It has fallen 25% year-to-date and is on track to post its worst annual performance since 2008. After a 48% increase in 2020, the measure rose 27% last year.

Many tech-heavy funds have been affected around the world, including Chase Coleman’s Tiger Global Management. This fund is one of the most popular equity hedge funds over the past 20 years. The fund, however, posted the largest industry loss in 2022. This was due to the tech rout which helped erase $16 billion from long-only and hedge funds.

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The Crypto Crash is attracting the eyeballs of internet users, including in China where crypto trading is banned

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When China outlawed cryptocurrency trading, many were left stunned, rather shocked, as they never believed that a country so committed and eager to establish an alternate currency of US Dollars could take such a drastic step. However, the people of China are still interested in the market’s volatility. Due to the love and confidence in cryptocurrency, many people have ended up discovering various workarounds to continue trading all kinds of tokens.

After a rough weekend, Bitcoin’s price tanked more than half from its peak of $69,000 in November 2021. The price of Bitcoin has crashed to the $30,000 mark now. The crash occurs in tandem with de-pegging of algorithmic stablecoin TerraUSD (UST).

Stablecoins are digital currencies that are tied to a stable reserve asset such as the US dollar or gold. The whole purpose behind such an arrangement is to reduce volatility in the crypto market which is by far the major concern of millions of traders who have decided to stay away from it. Besides, it also offers the advantages of digital currency like fast transactions.

An algorithmic stablecoin uses algorithms to maintain a price that is similar to central banking rather than having actual cash in reserve. UST is created by “burning” its sister token Luna using smart contracts. These are lines of code that are embedded into a blockchain and used to execute decisions automatically.

Terraform Labs, which is behind UST, cryptocurrency Luna and Luna Foundation Guard emptied its treasury account of all its bitcoin on Monday. This amounts to 42,530 bitcoin amounting to $1.3 billion. The price of UST fell to $0.95.

The hashtag #luna rose to the list of top ten keywords on Weibo on the same day. Weibo is China’s answer to Twitter and is widely considered a beacon for public discussion in China. As of Monday evening, nearly 15 million people had viewed posts tagged #luna.

Luna is now a mature entity. Although LFG [Luna Foundation Guard] had announced a loan of $1.5 billion to revive UST, I think Luna is overdue. Even if the rescue is successful, it could continue to struggle with Parkinson’s disease, trembling, and possibly even death. No one would be able to intervene in a situation like this trust crisis, wrote one Weibo user who has 200,000 followers. Others shared photos of the losses they suffered from Luna’s crash. The price of Luna dropped by more than half within 24 hours.

It’s nearly impossible to quantify how many Chinese people are trading crypto. However, close to 10% of web traffic that lands on OKX, which consistently sits atop the 15 exchanges worldwide, comes from China according to web analytics company similarWeb.

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Breaking The barrier: Samsung Smartphone with 200MP Camera to change market equations

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Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra smartphone with 200MP camera

Late last year, Samsung announced the first Smartphone with 200MP smartphone camera sensor. Although such a powerful particular sensor has not yet been made available on any smartphone, it seems that a better version of it could make a debut soon. A new report by South Korean publication ETNews claims that Samsung is gearing up for the announcement of a smartphone with a 200MP camera sensor which has a better and improved version of the sensor. However, the updated and upgraded 200MP sensor is not ready yet, but the Korean smartphone giant is at the final stage of completion and may introduce it in a future flagship smartphone, such as the Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra in 2023.

Both the divisions of Samsung, Samsung Electronics Mobile Communications and Electro-Mechanics, are said to be close completing to complete the updated version as soon as possible. The updated version would be called the ISOCELL HP3, which is reportedly in the final stage of completion.

At present, however, it’s not known what improvements and enhancements would be introduced with ISOCELL HP3. But what we know for sure is that the new 200-megapixels sensor is one of the most powerful sensors that would be introduced in smartphones. The manufacturing responsibility will be shared by both divisions, with the mobile division being responsible for 30% and the Electro-Mechanics section taking care of the majority with the remaining 70%.

In 2020, Samsung introduced Galaxy S20 Ultra with 108MP camera sensor, which is the most advanced camera sensor introduced by the Korean electronics giant to date. The company retained the same camera with the Galaxy S21 Ultra launched in the following year. People were quite confident about Samsung raising the bar with a more powerful camera sensor with Galaxy S22 Ultra but they were disappointed when Galaxy S22 Ultra was introduced with the same 108MP sensor.

Samsung is a leader in the megapixel race and has been dominating the market for years. However, it could be looking to increase its megapixel count in 2023. It could give new life to its flagship line of smartphones with a 200MP camera sensor and widen the gap with its arch-rival Apple. The iPhone market is still sticking with a 12MP camera but is expected to launch iPhone 14 Pro with 48MP camera late this year.

All said and done, a lot many things are still in the early stages of the process so don’t be surprised if any other smartphone will debut with the new ISOCELL HP3. However, at this stage, most likely it will be Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra. Keep in mind that anything could happen when information is at rumours stage. We will hopefully get more information over the coming months, which will give us a better view of Samsung’s future plans. Whatever be the case, the new smartphone with 200MP camera sensor is about to change the game. Will it also change the market equations, only the time will tell!

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The silent shift of Manu Jain, ED raids, and Xiaomi in hot water: Expect the unexpected?

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Manu Jain Xiaomi accounts seized

It all started in December last year when Enforcement Directorate (ED) officials raided Xiaomi’s offices on the pretext of financial irregularities. The officials from income tax and ED had credible intelligence inputs of concealed income and tax evasion. All of it led to the screening of royalty payments made by the Indian entity – Xiaomi Technologies India Private Limited (XTIPL) – to the group.

The company was quick to respond and refuted all the claims of any wrongdoings. However, the statements didn’t find many takers among the ED and Income Tax department as they already smelled a rat.

While the government officials were busy putting blocks in place to make a list of uncomfortable questions based on the documents they seized, another notable development started happening at Xiaomi’s end. The poster boy of Xiaomi’s growth in India – Manu Kumar Jain – silently moved to Dubai. It was quite unusual, rather shocking, as the company is widely popular to make the most of social media and PR for every negligible to significant development related to the company. Shifting Manu Jain, a synonym of Xiaomi in India, was undoubtedly the biggest development that the company decided to stay tight-lipped about.

Within a few months of ED raiding Xiaomi’s office and seizing many documents, Manu Kumar Jain moved to Dubai, UAE from Bangalore, India. A closer look at his LinkedIn profile reveals a few other eye-catching ‘developments’ as well. Jain, who was leading the growth of Xiaomi in India and holding the position of Managing Director of Xiaomi technologies India, was elevated to Global VP – Xiaomi Technologies, the main holding company, after the departure of Hugo Barra in early 2017. However, as per his current profile, he only holds the position of Global VP, and served as Managing Director of Xiaomi Technology India (XTIPL) until September 2021. Surprisingly, there is no announcement from the company about his successor until now. The company has neither denied nor confirmed Jain’s position with respect to India operations.

The blazing social media guns of Manu Kumar Jain have also gone silent now. Popular for his hyperactive nature on social media, his last post was seen more than a month ago. Contrary to his style, Manu was nowhere to be seen in any of the recent Xiaomi events held in India. All the events are being hosted by his colleagues who belong to the mid and senior levels of the executive team of Xiaomi India.

Did he already sense the presence of a few unwelcome guests about to knock on the door armed with some really uncomfortable and itchy questions?

The noose was tightened, and stress was at its peak as ED was keeping a close eye on each and every development related to top executives of Xiaomi Technologies India.

In April 2022 ED summoned Manu Kumar Jain to appear before the investigating officers in Bengaluru. He was also asked to furnish multiple financial documents related to the company. This was the third time when Jain was summoned by the ED after he failed to appear on the two previously. There was no chance of any goof up this time.

ED recorded Jain’s statements on four occasions, April 13, April 14, April 21, and April 26. In a parallel exercise, the agency also recorded the statements of B.S. Rao, Chief financial officer (CFO) – Xiaomi Technologies India, on March 25, April 14, April 19, April 21, April 22, and April 26.

ED came into action almost immediately after recording the statements. On April 29, ED froze nearly $725 million (a whopping INR 5,551 crores) from Xiaomi’s Indian bank account. The ED accused the company of allegedly violating the Indian foreign exchange law (Foreign Exchange Management Act) and remitted the amount to its foreign entities without availing any services from them.

“Such huge amounts in the name of royalties were remitted on the instructions of their Chinese parent group entities,” the agency said.

“Xiaomi India procures the completely manufactured mobile sets and other products from the manufacturers in India. Xiaomi India has not availed any service from the three foreign-based entities to whom such amounts have been transferred,” the agency added.

However, barely a few days after, on May 04, 2022, Xiaomi came down heavily on ED officials accusing them of threatening their employees with “physical violence” and coercion during the interrogation. As per the complaint filed by the company, its top executives, including Manu Kumar Jain, and their families were warned of facing ‘dire consequences’ if they deny submitting statements as per the agency.

As per the court filing by Xiaomi, on April 26, Indian agency officials “dictated and forced” S.B. Rao, CFO – Xiaomi India, to include a sentence as part of his statement under extreme duress.

“I admit the royalty payments have been made by XTIPL as per the directions from certain persons in the Xiaomi group,” Rao stated to ED.

Refuting all such claims, ED labeled the allegations “baseless”.

“The officials of Xiaomi India deposed their statements before ED under FEMA voluntarily in the most conducive environment on various occasions,” the agency said.

The rift between the dominant smartphone company in India and regulatory agencies is out in the open now. Even though Jain’s quiet departure to Dubai and unearth of alleged financial irregularities at Xiaomi are coincident, the timing of his decision triggers a lot of speculations.

Whatever may be the reality, it’s going to be quite a bumpy ride for Xiaomi in India. For a very long time, Jain kept Xiaomi safe from the wrath of Indian authorities with his charismatic style of functioning despite the geopolitical tension between China and India since mid of 2020. Many leading/popular apps, including TikTok, WeChat, and UCBrowser, have been banned by Indian authorities since then.

In India, Xiaomi is in hot water now; Manu’s departure from India at a time when his presence is needed the most in the country gives rise to a lot of speculations and unwanted discussions. Has he ‘timed’ it well? Will Xiaomi be able to sail through this testing time successfully? Indeed, a difficult question to answer at this moment!

All eyes are set on May 14, 2022, when the next hearing is scheduled. We may, or may not, get enough food for thought then, but may get a clear hint about which way the wind is blowing!

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Crypto Wallet Security: The skyrocketing scam losses bring security measures on spotlight

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cryptocurrency-scams

Many people start out trading their cryptocurrencies through 3rd party wallets or services, but there are risks involved when keeping them locked up in these accounts.

As the popularity of cryptocurrency has increased, so has the crime rate surrounding it. Cybercriminals have realized that with the existence of currency comes a greater potential for acquiring personal wealth. Most forms of crypto-related crime include phishing scams, malware, or ransacking hard drives and using passwords, PINs, or seed phrases. Many cryptocurrency users avoid these dangers by storing their funds in secure wallets that can only be accessed when connected to the internet via a device they are aware is secure. 

As the underground market continues to expand rapidly, eager thieves are discovering newer methods keen on improving their ability to penetrate systems security. To combat this new threat, it is vital for digital currency owners always to ensure any company used for work related to cryptocurrency transactions invokes an extremely secure environment where assets cannot be stolen during transfers from one account to another.

The latest FTC report shows that frauds and scams related to cryptocurrency have skyrocketed since 2016. From stealing investors’ coins to phishing emails, securing your digital currency’s sensitive information is essential for protecting yourself against identity theft.

Having smooth crypto transactions via digital wallets on mobile, and keeping sensitive user information secure in a crypto wallet app becomes more critical. 

Let’s understand the issues challenging a digital wallet’s security measures.

Platform trust issues of mobile crypto wallets

 There are three types of crypto wallets – web, mobile, and desktop.

Each one is at risk of being attacked by a cybercriminal for specific reasons.

Mobile digital wallets that are most popular for accessing personal crypto wallets online have security weaknesses.

They often do not check if the device is trusted: rooted or jailbroken, if it has a potentially harmful app or reverse-engineering tools installed, etc. These can easily make such wallet platforms target hackers who wish to steal funds from your account.

In the past, we have read how existing malware like Pegasus or any Trojan-horse like iOS/Android Apps are ticking time bombs to gain access to users’ credentials, mnemonics, private keys, or other sensitive data that apps leave stored in their memory.

How to secure your Crypto Wallets

In the section part, we want to talk about storing your crypto safely so you can avoid scams and theft related to cryptocurrency.

1: Use a Cold Wallet

Many people have heard about “cold wallets” when it comes to blockchain transactions that are encrypted and plugged in but aren’t connected to the internet, so there’s little, as compared to other types, the danger of a cyberattack like in the case with hot wallets.

Common types are Paper wallets (as the name suggests, Private and Public keys are mentioned on a paper and can be accessed with the help of QR scans) and Hardware Wallets, i.e., secure hardware acting as a repository of private keys.

 2: Avoid Public Wi-Fi

Want to keep your finances in order while trading or making crypto transactions? Make sure you’re using a secure internet connection and, if possible, avoid public Wi-Fi. Add a VPN, and you get additional security. A VPN camouflages your IP address and location so that no one knows where you are. This protects you from online threats and hackers, but it can also allow you to do things like access region-locked content.

3: diversify investments in multiple wallets

A cryptocurrency wallet is like a drawer. These are small containers that allow private individuals to store their valuable crypto keys – the information that allows them to make transactions with cryptocurrency. And because the risks in crypto are aplenty, you mustn’t leave your crypto portfolio unprotected. Using multiple cryptocurrency wallets is one way to help keep control of your crypto life where you can strike a balance between wallets for crypto holdings and keep data breaches at bay.

4: 2FA/MFA for password security

Despite being easy and convenient to use, Infosec space no longer approves of using text messages alone as digital security. Their inherent design flaws, including vulnerabilities such as SIM swapping, spoofing SMS / aggregator numbers, and phishing attacks, make them poor options for safeguarding digital assets.

So if you’re thinking about investing in some cryptocurrencies, you’ll want to do so through a cryptocurrency exchange that offers two-factor authentication to ensure your money is safe.

2-factor authentication (sometimes abbreviated as 2FA) is one of the safest ways to secure your password. It is an access-control mechanism that requires two different methods of identification or authentication:

· the first being something you know (such as a PIN), and

· the second is something you have (like your phone, which sends a text message to verify it’s you).

5: Go Slow With Investments

Keeping a good mixture of small and large amounts of cryptocurrency in different wallets is wise. Don’t keep all your digital coins in one place. Protect your digital currency from potential threats such as hackers.

6: Backup Information

Losing your crypto account’s private keys could permanently lose cryptocurrency to the extent that recovery may not be possible. Therefore, it is crucial to store backup copies of your primary wallet’s private keys, which prove that your account belongs to you and is needed to recover its access.

Crypto wallet security is tricky to tackle, with multiple weak spots and areas of concern. There are two main issues: the first relates to access to local storage, where malware can easily steal your private keys. Another is lack of authentication, which means that in some cases, viruses and other malicious software can affect data being accessed (alongside potential access via unsecure mobile devices). In addition, there is a lack of input validation, meaning that users can inadvertently change permissions and grant functions on their devices when using crypto wallet software.

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Apple Stops Accepting Indian Cards For Apps and Subscriptions Services

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app discovery on App Store

You may not be allowed to add debit or credit card issues in India to your Apple account. You will also not be able to make new payments with these cards even if your Indian card details were already stored in your Apple account.

Sounding quite strange, isn’t it?

Apple App Store will stop accepting debit and credit cards issued in India for app purchases and subscription services from June 01. Even ad campaigns on Apple search can’t be run using any Indian cards. The Cupertino giant has made this move after finding it difficult to deal with transactions triggered through Indian cards due to the new auto-debit guidelines issued by the Reserve Bank of India last year.

At the moment, net banking, Apple ID balance, and UPI are the only options Indian users can make use of to pay for services, such as iCloud, Apple Music, and app purchases, from the App store.

“Due to Reserve Bank of India (RBI) regulations, Apple Search Ads will soon no longer accept payments from credit cards issued by banks in India,” Apple said in an email to users.

The new Auto-debit rules went into effect on October 1, 2021. It requires that everyone register again for recurring payment services such as Netflix or iCloud. These new rules are implemented with an intention to keep users more cautious about upcoming transactions, including a reminder of due dates and the ability to cancel payments before they are debited automatically. A new e-mandate must be created for each recurring payment, and it would have required Apple to make changes to its payment gateway to comply with the RBI guidelines.

However, the latest update from Apple indicates that Apple has decided either not to implement the required new changes or has delayed the implementation for an unknown duration.

The new RBI mandate related to the subscription business has impacted many businesses in India as well as individuals who have been opting for services from various providers on a monthly basis. International merchants, small enterprises, and startups who may not have a sizeable share of revenue coming from Indian customers have decided not to forge tie-up with local banks in order to comply with the new RBI mandate. They have requested their customers in India to look for an alternate mode of payment.

Struggling with Apple App Store Payments?

Are you among the ones having trouble paying for Apple services? There is a simple solution though.

For a seamless experience, go to your Apple wallet and top up your Apple Account balance, equal to the amount of your subscription service each month, in advance. The charged amount will be deducted from your account automatically on the due date. This may seem like an extra step in comparison to automatic payments though. UPI can also be used for Apple-related transactions, but it is limited to adding funds to an Apple ID.

For the moment, you need to either say good buy or arrange a card issued overseas for recurring iOS payments. Apple will send you an email every month about a payment failure. You can add money to your wallet to get around this problem. You can add more money to continue uninterrupted services after the initial amount is exhausted.

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