Digital Europe: 5 things you may have missed w44

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Week 44: October 29th - November 4th, 2018

There is a lot happening each week in digital across Europe, so we wanted to take some of the pain out of staying up-to-date. Below are our top five digital happenings across the continent. This week, we have a distinctly Scandinavian flavour.


Google Pay launches in Norway

Google Pay way launched on the 30/10/2018 in Norway for Android users. Norway becomes the 25th country in the world to have Google Pay launched within its borders. To register, people simply link their Visa cards.

Google’s slow rollout across the contactless-payment-world sees the tech giant encroach even more into the world of payments and finance.

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In Iceland, the drones are landing

In Iceland, takeaway is now delivered by drones. Flytrex, a company specialising in the manufacture of drones and related software, has partnered with Aha.is, one of Iceland’s leading food delivery apps, to bring steaming hot food to the doors of hungry Icelanders in across Reykjavik.

Read more on drones and their growing global impact
Watch them fly!



Protection of EU Citizen Privacy motion adopted

The aftermath of the Facebook-Cambridge Analytica scandal has not died down across Europe. This week members of the European parliament have adopted a resolution to allow EU bodies to carry out a full audit on the level of data protection offered to European citizens by Facebook.

Protection against election manipulation must be assured to ensure valid democratic outcomes. European parliament is taking the lead.

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McKinsey & Co. acquires ‘Veryday’ design firm in Sweden

McKinsey, like many of the larger consulting firms, continue to acquire executional capability to enable the implementation of strategic work they are typically known for. This week, they announced the acquisition of two design firms to assist in growing their capability: Lunar in SF and Veryday in Sweden.

The continued two-titan battle between traditional agencies and traditional consultancies continues. Acquisitions to expand their offerings across the Transformation / Creative / Digital / Media / Data landscapes continue. An exciting space to watch.

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Spotify speaking out against proposed EU digital service tax

Under a new European Commission proposal, companies with significant digital revenues in Europe will pay a 3 percent tax on their turnover on various online services in the European Union. The 3% digital service tax (DST) would be for companies that have worldwide revenues of at least €750m and European revenues of €50m. Brussels says the thresholds will exempt everyone but the largest tech giants and raise around €5bn a year.

Chief executives from Spotify, Booking.com, Angry Birds maker Rovio, Takeaway.com, Zalando and eDreams argue, “The proposed DST has been designed with large and highly profitable companies in mind, but will have a disproportionate impact on European companies, resulting in unfair treatment”.

The idea behind the tax is to create an “interim measure” while international rules on taxation of digital companies are being agreed by the OECD and G20. EU tax matters need the unanimous approval of all 28 member states and a number of other EU member states have some concerns.

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