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MongoDB stock is down after Amazon Web Services launches DocumentDB

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MongoDB’s stock was down 13% at the close of the first day of trading after Amazon Web Services launched DocumentDB, a direct competitor to its own database business. The company, which went public in 2017, is now valued at just over $4 billion.

On Wednesday, Eliot Horowitz, CTO and co-founder of MongoDB, told Business Insider that he’s not worried about Amazon DocumentDB — rather, he said, it was a sign of “how desperate Amazon was” to do what MongoDB does. Wall Street, however, does not seem to agree, evidenced by the dropping share price.

Read more: The CTO of $4.4 billion MongoDB explains why he’s ‘not terribly worried’ that Amazon’s cloud is encroaching on its turf with a new database

“Amazon released a product that is not only competitive and directly targeted at MongoDB,” Edward Parker, director and data and cloud infrastructure analyst at analyst firm BTIG, told Business Insider. “Given Amazon’s cloud size and technical confidence, we have to take this very seriously. It has competitive implications for MongoDB.”

Notably, DocumentDB is compatible with certain older versions of MongoDB, potentially making it easier for customers to move from one to the other. For its part, DocumentDB is tightly integrated with the rest of the Amazon Web Services empire, and customers pay only for what they use.

Not all hope is lost for MongoDB, though, says Parker. What makes MongoDB stand out is its enthusiastic developer following. That enthusiasm might mean that AWS has trouble swiping these customers away from MongoDB, no matter how easy Amazon makes it. Besides, MongoDB has been around longer, and is more fully-featured.

“MongoDB has a very capable document database with a very passionate and large developer base,” Parker said. “Amazon has advantages over MongoDB in terms of scale and overall resource preponderance. The question is the extent to which Amazon can attract MongoDB developers.”

MongoDB CEO and president Dev Ittycheria
MongoDB

In an interview with TechCrunch, MongoDB CEO and president Dev Ittycheria was more confident, saying that “imitation was the sincerest form of flattery” and that “developers are technically savvy enough to distinguish between the real thing and a poor imitation.”

“MongoDB will continue to outperform any impersonations in the market,” Ittycheria told TechCrunch.

MongoDB has a secret weapon

In a note to clients, BTIG analysts pointed out that MongoDB has weathered similar storms before — a competing database from Microsoft Azure, called CosmosDB, failed to make a significant dent on MongoDB’s momentum.

“CosmosDB is a document database from Microsoft which is the de facto number 2 hyperscale cloud provider,” Parker said. “In theory, you would have expected that to be viable competition, but it hasn’t really been able to slow down MongoDB. Microsoft has likely not been able to capture the same kind of developer mindshare that MongoDB has.”

Instead, MongoDB says, it’s common for customers to install MongoDB itself on their Microsoft Azure cloud infrastructure. MongoDB’s Horowitz expects that there will be a similar dynamic at play with Amazon DocumentDB.

“We have had zero problems with MongoDB adoption on Azure,” Horowitz told Business Insider. “I don’t think [Amazon DocumentDB] going to have a terribly large effect on our business. It will bring MongoDB to the forefront to people’s minds. It shows people who haven’t used MongoDB before just how powerful the MongoDB API is.”

Ultimately, BTIG believes that while the introduction of Amazon DocumentDB may not hurt MongoDB in the short run, it remains to be seen if it’ll have long-term effects on the business. At the same time, MongoDB’s killer advantage is really that developer enthusiasm, giving Amazon a high bar to clear, say the analysts.

“Time will tell the extent to which [Amazon] is able to successfully emulate [MongoDB]’s virtues while overcoming some of its shortcomings, but it’s hard to conclude that this development doesn’t have negative competitive implications,” BTIG analysts wrote.

Also of note is that MongoDB was one of the companies that went on the defensive against cloud providers, like Amazon or Baidu, that take open source software like its own and package it up as a service for profit. To do so, MongoDB changed its software licensing agreements — a a controversial move with ripple effects still playing out.

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Wedding attack and tech: How OpenText’s investigations service beats the traditional approach

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At its heart, an investigation is a hunt for relevant facts in order to tell a story — a story that drives strategies for organizations, including law firms.

Tracy Drynan, head of OpenText Recon Investigations — a seamless end-to-end service that helps companies and law firms find evidence for all types of investigations including internal investigations, litigation assessments, compliance and regulatory investigations, c-suite vetting and more — says these stories are a more powerful tool than most people think.

The team led by Drynan arms both in-house and external counsel with the information needed to guide their corporate and outside lawyers with the information needed to guide their clients: an investigation empowers them. What differentiates OpenText Recon is the speed with which the team utilizes specialized tools and workflows to efficiently locate evidence. This approach gains insights into patterns, gaps and relationships in a fraction of the cost of a traditional eDiscovery review, and more quickly gathers the relevant facts to create that critical story.

“Whether it be litigation or a regulatory investigation or an internal audit, often time is of the essence,” Drynan says. “Being able to make decisions that affect your bottom line, your liability, your risks which ultimately challenge your resources, even public opinion, is critical.”

Too often, an archaic model is applied to investigations — one derived when we still existed in a paper society — that analyzes all available information but doesn’t actively hunt for relevant facts, and that produces a disconnect. An efficient model does not need to analyze every piece of information.

“It’s flawed for this reason,” Drynan says. “When you review a set of information, even when you apply advanced analytics and information retrieval science, it is still at the end bucketed for a team to analyze it contiguously. In a way, we are still following the pre-electronic paradigm — we are reviewing almost paper documents one by one, and that unfortunately is handicapping both the talent and the technology in the hunt for the facts.”

While lawyers may make a living hunting facts and building narratives, Drynan would argue their approach could be improved and points out that many of the companies hired by firms to help out during an investigation still apply that outdated model. OpenText Recon breaks that pattern and approaches the hunt differently — they don’t compartmentalize anything, which means the team can identify patterns more easily. Those patterns become the clues, which become the facts, that become the story that allow lawyers to make those critical decisions. The result is not a stack of documents, but a more nuanced report outlining the important facts to analyze.

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Canada takes aim at Netflix, Airbnb in $6.5B big-tech tax plan

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Canada’s federal government is planning to force foreign-based technology firms such as Netflix Inc. and Airbnb Inc. to charge their users a sales tax in a move aimed at boosting the government’s coffers by as much as $6.5 billion over the next five years. 

The new taxation plans, outlined in the government’s Fall Economic Statement, attempt to level the playing field between Canadian companies and foreign-based digital corporations that were largely exempt from paying federal sales taxes. Some provinces — such as Saskatchewan, British Columbia, and Quebec — introduced taxes on streaming services like Netflix earlier this year. 

The government announced Monday that any foreign-based company selling digital products or services to consumers in Canada will be required to collect and remit the Goods and Services Tax or Harmonized Sales Tax. The new tax changes are proposed to begin on July 1, 2021. 

“Canadians want a tax system that is fair, where everyone pays their fair share, so the government has the resources it needs to invest in people and keep our economy strong. That is why we are moving ahead with implementing GST/HST on multinational digital giants and limiting stock option deductions in the largest companies,” said Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland, in prepared remarks. 

“And Canada will act unilaterally, if necessary … to apply a tax on large multinational digital corporations, so they pay their fair share just like any other company operating in Canada.”

Those taxes will include any sales on products or services made through digital marketplace platforms, sales to Canadians of goods that are located in Canadian fulfillment warehouses, as well as any companies whose platforms help to facilitate short-term rental accommodations in Canada. 

However, the new taxation moves wouldn’t see streaming services such as Netflix, Amazon.com Inc.’s Prime Video, Walt Disney Co.’s Disney+, and Spotify Technology SA meet certain Canadian-content requirements, something the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission​ recommended be adopted rather than introduce new tax measures in a wide-ranging report released earlier this year. 

The CRTC estimates that those streaming services record annual revenue of roughly $5 billion, according to its most recent financial data. The federal broadcast regulator said in January that Ottawa should require foreign streaming services to invest in local programming rather than “digital taxes” that would likely get passed down to consumers. 

“It is more appropriate to establish a regime that requires such online streaming services that benefit from operating in Canada to invest in Canadian programming that they believe will attract and appeal to Canadians,” the report said. 

Ottawa will also consider new corporate-level taxes for foreign-owned digital corporations and is working with the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development to develop a framework it expects to provide further details on in the next budget. It expects the new measure will result in $3.4 billion in new tax revenue over the next five years once it is introduced sometime in 2022. 

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RevoluGROUP Canada Inc. RevoluPAY To Pursue Dubai Financial Services Authority PSP License

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VANCOUVER, British Columbia(GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — RevoluGROUP Canada Inc. (TSX-V: REVO), (Frankfurt: IJA2) (the “Company”) is pleased to announce that it has dispatched Company advisor Erik A. Lara Riveros to pursue the petition of a Payment Service Provider (“PSP”) Money Service Business License in the Dubai International Financial Centre (“DIFC”) from the Dubai Financial Services Authority.

Corporate Rational For a PSP License in Dubai

In May 2020, RevoluPAY was granted the European PSD2 license. In September, RevoluPAY received Pan-European passporting approval to operate in 27 E.U. countries. The Company has further expanded its international open banking reach through definitive agreements (“DA”) with BBVA, Flutterwave, and Thunes. Additionally, via direct PSD2 SEPA passporting, the Company added sixty-eight countries and territories to its financial operations roster. In November, the Company submitted petitions for both the analogous United States MSB licenses and the Canadian FINTRAC license. The MEASA region of the Middle East, Africa, and South Asia is a significant financial hub that necessitates exposure for both financial operations and a strategic base for the region’s operations. The Company considers the DIFC an excellent regional hub, having introduced robust legislation for payment services providers (“PSP”) like RevoluPAY.

Furthermore, DIFC conveniently fills the timezone gap for a global financial center between London and New York’s leading financial centers in the West and Hong Kong and Tokyo in the East. Company advisor Erik A. Lara Riveros is duly accredited with the Dubai Financial Services Authority, which should aid the Company’s plans to obtain the Dubai PSP license and establish a corporate financial hub in the region. The Company has diligently prepared all required documentation, and Mr. Lara Riveros arrives in Dubai on the 4th of December 2020 to initiate the license petition process. The global operations of RevoluPAY expect to benefit from the multi timezone capability garnered from a supplementary and PSP licensed subsidiary domiciled in the MEASA region.

License Sought in Dubai

The Company intends to pursue the Category 3D license, which covers the following activities, “Providing or Operating a Payment Account, executing Payment Transactions or Issuing Payment Instruments, including creating and maintaining accounts for executing payment transactions, issuance of personalized sets of procedures agreed upon by the users and the provider, for initiation or execution of payment instructions.”

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