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The HfP chat thread – Wednesday 1st December

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We are running this daily chat thread on Head for Points during the coronavirus outbreak.

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Comments (488)

  • Mikeact says:

    Could somebody briefly explain to me how a British regulator,CMA, can force one of the largest US company’s, Facebook to sell its latest acquisition Giphy ? Where is the rest of the world in all of this…. can any country do this sort of thing ?

    • Graham Walsh says:

      Just reading the summary, seems bonkers to me. Why did the CMA even investigate it? Were they tipped off my Mr X? Haven’t they got better things to do. Wonder if the French/Germans/Russians etc investigated it?

      • ChrisC says:

        The investigated because both companies operate in the UK and the takeover has an effect on the UK market.

        See paras 12, 13 and 14 for example

        https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/media/61a4bfa2e90e07044a559d57/Facebook_GIPHY_-_Summary_of_Final_Report.pdf

        • Mikeact says:

          But what about other global markets where they operate or doesn’t anybody care….and if it’s important enough for Facebook to retain Giphy why wouldn’t they stick two fingers up and just relocate, or do the UK have the power to dictate to any company in the world what they can and cannot do. Too confusing for me.

          • Rui N. says:

            We have the power to dictate what every company operating here does. Like Rob says below, Facebook is of course in their right to withdraw from the UK market so that they can buy Giphy.

      • CH says:

        The French/Russians/Germans likely did investigate it (or at least the EU and Russians),if it does any business there. It is quite common for acquisitions to require approval in each jurisdiction in which the target has any substantial business activity. Some jurisdictions have much lower thresholds, occasionally well below any sensible level on which the market could be impacted.

    • Rob says:

      Nothing stops Facebook selling off giphy.co.uk and banning UK access to the main website.

      The UK is also looking at stopping IAG buying Air Europa, as we covered the other week, both of which are Spanish businesses.

      Facebook (and Google etc) have a strategy of buying up any business which could end up being a competitor to them. Governments are getting wiser to this.

      • Mikeact says:

        Thanks…think I’ve got it.
        I guess any country where IAG and Air Europa operate will or could raise objections if its not in their interests. It seems to me that a lot of this stuff goes on behind closed doors. ..maybe a bit of back scratching.

        • Super Secret Stuff says:

          Essentially near enough yes. IAG are in a weak position compared to the likes of Facebook as they need to maintain Ibears and Air Europas operating liscene etc. Which makes moving out of the EU extremely difficult

      • Will says:

        Buying up competitors to ensure a monopoly. It does support the theory that all capitalism ends in rent seeking.

  • LS says:

    Is there a number to convert avios to nectar?

  • Zack says:

    Random question: I might be a bit late with this but I’ll ask anyway. My BA companion voucher expired on the 22nd of November. I tried booking a redemption on the 21st, but being that BAEC was “still” not fully live I was unsuccessful.
    Is there an way I can get this voucher reinstated? I really don’t fancy waiting endless amounts of time on the phone with BA when they might or might not help me. Is there an alternative?

    • Anna says:

      Chat or Twitter but you may need to escalate it as they’ll probably say initially that there’s nothing they can do. It’s well documented that the system was supposed to be working earlier so you should have a good case. You’ll have to communicate with BA somehow though!

  • Karen says:

    Just received my 15000 Nectar points from the 50x Ebay promo last Friday – that was quick!

  • Rich says:

    Looks like France is requiring negative test for all arrivals from outside the EU – even if fully vaccinated – from Saturday. Not clear if it’s PCR or LFT.

    • Ben W says:

      My daytrip to Paris on Eurostar next week is sounding less and less easy.

    • Rich says:

      You can rebook for no fee (but you pay difference in fare) if > 7 days out. You do have to choose your new dates though, which is annoying.

      Or I guess back to playing the waiting game and hope your trains are cancelled.

  • JM says:

    Interested in the Accor Limitless Experiences which was mentioned yesterday, not bad points ofer for an event that is sold out for cash currently – I have an Accor account but minimal points – What is the best way to transfer INTO Accor? I remember seeing something about Eurostar a while ago…

  • Omicron says:

    What’s with the useless site, is this because I have points still pending to post in nectar from last month?

    Avios to Nectar conversion unavailable

  • Sukes says:

    US identifies 1st confirmed Omicron case, a San Francisco resident who had travelled from S Africa on 22 Nov. SF public health director says does not expect any additional SF public health restrictions. Separately CDC announced arrivals testing ability is to be ramped up at SFO, Atlanta, JFK and Newark.

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