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The FCPA Blog

Are whistleblower reward programs really a good idea?
The SEC’s office of the whistleblower awards money to individuals who provide tips that lead to successful enforcement actions where recoveries are more than USD 1 million. Money for whistleblower awards comes from the SEC’s Investor Protection Fund, which is funded through disgorgement and penalties.The SEC whistleblower award programme looks like a success. But not everyone agrees on the effectiveness of programmes that incentivise whistleblowing.

CNBC-TV18's The Firm

E-commerce Taxation: Flipkart Not ‘Sale’ing Anymore!
Most e-commerce portals in India usually follow the ‘marketplace model’ where they do not act as a principal seller but only provide online marketplace services and act as a ‘facilitator to sales’ made by the principal seller to the prospective customer. Many State Revenue Departments have challenged the supply flow of goods in this model, disagreeing with the role of online portals as mere ‘facilitators to sales’. In the recent case of Flipkart Internet Private Limited versus State of Kerala, Flipkart filed a writ petition challenging the demand raised by the VAT authorities of Kerala with respect to the sales executed by its registered seller (WS Retail) to customers located within the state of Kerala.

In this article, we discuss the outcome of the Flipkart case and how it may be extended to other online aggregator services. This will also play a crucial part in influencing the GST law at its initiation and in deciphering how e-commerce marketplace services will be perceived in the new regime. 

Forensic Insight

Regulators prosecuting corrupt intent
In many circumstances, efforts by regulators towards anti-corruption are noticed to be against the interest of business. Regulators across the globe are attempting to define the ethical conduct expected by corporations, providing adequate practical approaches towards ensuring compliance. Furthermore, regulators express their expectations from corporations from time to time, on the adoption of compliance in spirit than just words represented in the regulation.

ACFE Insights

6 Cognitive Biases of an Investigator in Corporate Fraud Investigations
Investigation requires an understanding of people and events, as well as the ability to put them into perspective. An investigator, while expected to be independent, should consider the possible cognitive biases he might possess while performing the role; otherwise, he might not approach the investigation professionally.

In this article, we examine the key biases an investigator may possess while conducting a fraud investigation. Further, we explain how biases can be used to help the investigation if used under the right circumstances.

Nexia Global Insight October 2015

Anti-corruption investigations – an Indian perspective
With economic progress, emerging technologies and increasing public agitation, the world is witnessing a heightened need for transparency and better governance. Regulators are increasingly considering international cooperation for criminal investigation and extraterritorial compliance enforcement. This is especially true with respect to corruption issues, as these issues defy the efforts being made towards improving transparency and governance. In this article, we discuss anti-corruptions investigations in India and the steps being taken to identify and clamp down on corrupt business practices.

eForensics Magazine

A Practitioner's Guide to Forensic Email Reviews
While a lot has been said about the approach towards handling emails as a source of evidence in forensic reviews, the approach towards using them as a tool to profile a subject is emerging at a snail’s pace. In our article in eForensics Magazine, we examine the context, approach, and practical reasons regarding such an approach for forensic email reviews.

Taxsutra's TP Portal: Expert Corner

Benchmarking deemed international transactions – No straight jacket formula?
Transfer pricing continues to be a key tax concern for enterprises operating globally. Given the nature and quantum of litigation in India surrounding transfer pricing, it is natural that companies may opt to structure their arrangement in a manner that transfer pricing provisions do not get triggered. In this article, Maulik Doshi, Partner, Transfer Pricing, discusses the concept of deemed international transaction and provides illustrative examples of domestic transactions that are covered within the definition of deemed international transaction. He further explains how these transactions will need to be benchmarked.

Valuation in E-tailing

In continuation of our e-commerce series, in this article we look at India's unique challenges, recent deals in the e-tailing market, how valuations are done, and why they are high for loss-making companies.

GST: Impact on Telecommunications in India

From the conventional belief of being a communication service provider to providing multiple streams of value-added services, the telecommunications sector has become one of India’s core economic drivers. India is only second to China in terms of the number of connections and subscribers. The sector is also among the top five employment generators in India.

Given the mammoth volume of subscriber connections and the revenue generated from this sector, it is evident that the telecom industry is due for a serious overhaul with the evolving indirect tax scenario i.e. the introduction of Goods and Services Tax (GST). In this article, we aim to decipher the various aspects of the telecom sector that may change in the GST regime.

FDI Issues for E-commerce Companies in India

The e-commerce segment in India has grown at a CAGR of 37% from 2009 and is expected to grow ten-fold by 2030. Although there is a horde of goods and services being offered, there are a few that dominate the market, with online travel agencies enjoying a whopping 71% share in the sector, and e-retail in tow at a low 16%. The e-commerce segment is still at a nascent stage and has immense potential to grow. For this, like any industry, it needs capital and quality-enhancing competition. Foreign direct investment is one such source which brings in both.

While foreign investors eagerly await relaxations in B2C (business-to-consumer) e-commerce, they have made their mark in the online B2B (business-to-business) segment. In this article, we look at the existing FDI Policy for e-commerce, various structures through which foreign investors operate in the Indian e-commerce market, and the ongoing discussions on the FDI Policy for e-commerce.