The Fair Trade Commission has launched reinvestigation into South Korea’s largest messenger app operator Daum Kakao for allegedly unilaterally nullifying contracts with mobile gift certificate operators.
The probe is drawing keen attention from the IT industry, particularly as it comes after Daum has stood against the government by releasing ‘transparent report.’
According to the antitrust watchdog and industry observers on Monday, the FTC’s Market Inspection Bureau sent investigators to probe whether Daum Kakao had abused its market power.
The latest probe acts as a supplement to the previous one, which was conducted after SK Planet filed a petition against Daum Kakao on charges of misusing market dominance.
The antitrust watchdog conducted an on-site investigation at Daum Kakao last August, after SK Planet, CJ E&M, KT mhows, which had supplied mobile gift certificates via Kakao Talk, claimed that their sales suffered after Daum Kakao canceled contracts with them and entered the mobile gift certificate business on its own.
The agency hinted at toughening regulations, saying, “we’ll keep a watchful eye on Daum Kakao, created through the merger of Daum Communications and Kakao, to prevent it from becoming the next Naver.”
By Hong Jang-won, Park Yoon-soo, Lee Gyung-jin
[ⓒ Pulse by Maeil Business News Korea & mk.co.kr, All rights reserved]