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Facebook Announces $100m Grants, Ad Credits for SMEs

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  • Facebook Announces $100m Grants, Ad Credits for SMEs

Facebook Inc, the world’s leading social media giant, announced it would offer grants and ad credits worth $100 million to Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) as the world battles coronavirus outbreak.

The social media giant disclosed that the assistance would be disbursed to 30,000 SMEs across around 30 countries. Representing an average of $3,333 per business.

Facebook said, in a blog post announcing the grant, “We know that your business may be experiencing disruptions resulting from the global outbreak of COVID-19. We’ve heard that a little financial support can go a long way, so we are offering $100M in cash grants and ad credits to help during this challenging time.”

It was reported that the majority of the businesses would get a cash grant.

Facebook’s Chief Operating Officer, Sheryl Sandberg, also stated on her Facebook page that the economic impact of the coronavirus outbreak on small businesses with limited operating capital would be severe during this period.

She said “We’ve listened to small businesses to understand how we can best help them. We’ve heard loud and clear that financial support could enable them to keep the lights on and pay people who can’t come to work.”

She added that with this, small businesses would be able to pay rent, cover operational costs like Facebook ads and other necessary operations. Facebook also plans to offer support for small businesses through training from its team.

In Nigeria, the central bank has lowered interest rates on intervention facilities to small businesses from 9 percent to 5 percent to help them navigate the current situation. Also, on Wednesday the apex bank announced it would inject N1.1 trillion into the economy to help manufacturers and the health sector.

Nations are working on reducing the impacts of the ravaging coronavirus on their economy, especially with most businesses shutting down operations to curb the spread of the virus.

President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday announced flight restrictions on 13 nations and on the same day, Arik air suspended flight operations to West Coast destinations.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade long experience in the global financial market. Contact Samed on Twitter: @sameolukoya

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Jeff Bezos Sets a New Record as Net Worth Hits $172bn

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Jeff Bezos

Jeff Bezos Breaks His Own Record, Now Worth $172bn

Jeff Bezos, the Chief Executive Officer and Founder of Amazon Inc, on Wednesday broke his own record to set a new all-time record of $172 billion net worth.

Bezos’s previous record was $167.7 billion attained in September 2018. However, the billionaire broke the record on Wednesday after Amazon shares gained 4.4 percent to close at $2,878.80 per share.

Jeff Bezos companies

This is despite the billionaire parting with 19.7 million Amazon shares in July 2019 as part of his divorce settlement to his wife, Mackenzie Bezos.

Mackenzie Bezos’s 19.7 million shares now worth around $56.9 billion, making her the second richest woman and the thirteenth richest person in the world.

Jeff Bezos’s net worth has now risen by $57.4 billion from the year-to-date, according to Bloomberg Billionaire Index.

Jeff bezos Net worth

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Opay Pauses Some Business Operations as COVID-19 Bites

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Opay halts business units

OPay Halts Some Business Units Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

Opay, a seamless mobile money service provider, has announced it would be putting some of its business units on hold as COVID-19 pandemic bites.

In a statement released by the Chinese owned mobile money start-up on its official twitter page @OPay_NG, the company said “We can confirm that some of our business units including the ride-hailing services, ORide, OCar as well as our logistics service OExpress will be put on pause.”

This, it said was largely due to the tough business environment brought about by COVID-19 pandemic, the lockdown and government ban of motorbikes in Lagos.

The statement read “Globally, ride-sharing businesses have been heavily impacted by the pandemic. But several months ago, foreseeing this issue, OPay had already taken preemptive steps to restructure our business focus away from rides. It is worth to note that this final restructuring has minimal impact on OPay as a whole business.”

“It is important to clarify that ride-sharing had always been only one part, and not a major part of OPay’s diversified business in Nigeria. In fact, OPay had been investing more and seeing accelerated growth in its commitment to Nigeria’s financial and technology inclusion.

“During the pandemic, we have seen continued demand for our offline mobile money agency, and online digital payment, which remains the core of our business.

“From January to April 2020 for example, we witnessed a 44% growth of offline and online transaction value even in the midst of pandemic and lockdown. This is a testament to the high demand for flexible and easy financial services by Nigerians. OPay remains one of the most well-funded and profitable mobile money platforms in Nigeria, and we will continue to do more for our customers.”

Below is the company’s official statement as published on Twitter.

Opay Statement

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Facebook, Google Earn 80% of Annual Digital Ads Spend – Report

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facebook and google ads revenue uk

Facebook, Google Earn 80% of the £14bn Spent on Digital Ads in 2019

A recent report from the United Kingdom’s competition watchdog has shown that Facebook and Google earned 80 percent of all the money spent by advertisers on digital platforms in 2019.

In the 440-page report, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), UK said Google and Facebook market positions are having a “profound impact” on newspapers that now receive almost 40 percent of all visits to their sites through the two platforms.

“This dependency potentially squeezes their share of digital advertising revenues, undermining their ability to produce valuable content,” the watchdog said.

This is coming two weeks after Investors King called on the Federal Government of Nigeria to protect Small and Medium businesses against Facebook and Google activities or watch the nation’s SMEs die. Investors King had posited that “Nigerian startups can not compete with Facebook and the recent tax announced by the Federal Government through the ministry of finance would not be enough to stop these giant tech companies from taking advantage of Nigeria’s young growing market.

According to the CMA report, out of the £14 billion spent on digital advertising in the United Kingdom in 2019, Google with more than 90 percent share of market search earned £7.3 billon while Facebook with more than 50 percent of display market earned £5.5 billion. Representing 80 percent of the total digital ads spent in 2019.

While the report admits that the two platforms help small businesses reach customers and are valued by users, it also said they have “developed such unassailable market positions that rivals can no longer compete on equal terms”.

Andrea Coscelli, Chief Executive at CMA, said: “What we have found is concerning – if the market power of these firms goes unchecked, people and businesses will lose out.

“People will carry on handing over more of their personal data than necessary, a lack of competition could mean higher prices for goods and services bought online and we could all miss out on the benefits of the next innovative digital platform.

“Our clear recommendation to government is that a new pro-competitive regulatory regime be established to address the concerns we have identified and regulate a sector which is central to all our lives.”

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