Facebook taps SMBs with SME India Council for small businesses

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Facebook has launched the first SME India Council with 12 small business owners from different geographies and varied business objectives to increase its business with Indian SMBs.

The council – first such in the Asia-Pacific region – will meet throughout the year to share feedback, discuss new ideas and work with Facebook to build better ads solutions.

“Mobility is the future of India. We are excited about the tremendous opportunities it creates for people and businesses and are invested for the long-term,” said Kirthiga Reddy, managing director, Facebook India.

“The SME India Council is an open forum for local businesses to share feedback with our teams so we can align and continue to develop impactful solutions to grow their business,” he explained.

According to Facebook India, more than 1.99 billion interactions have been made between people and two million small businesses with Facebook Pages in India.

Of the 138 million people on Facebook in India (90 percent on mobile), more than half of them are connected to at least one small business in the country.

The SME India Council will meet a few times over the coming months to discuss progress on solutions, business ideas, discuss new successes and challenges and meet the Facebook teams.

Globally, over 45 million small businesses actively use Facebook Pages because they are free, easy to use and immediately give businesses a digital (and mobile) strategy.

“The SME India Council will help our teams understand specific needs and build solutions to help all Indian businesses connect with the right people and grow,” added Rahul Desai, India SME director, Facebook.

Some of the 12 small business owners are Amruta Walvekar, director, Wrapistry; Anaka Narayanan, director, Brass Tacks; and Maya Chandrasekaran, chief of talent, Babajob.com, among others.

Facebook faces trouble in Belgium

Only logged-in users would be able to view their Facebook pages in Belgium after the privacy watchdog accused the social networking site of violating the European Union law by tracking non-users through persistent cookies without their consent, media reports said.

Facebook’s ongoing legal predicament in Belgium is not concerned with how it treats users, though, but how it tracks any visitor to its pages, logged-in or not, Engadget reported.

Following compliance demands made by Belgium’s Privacy Protection Commission, a Belgian court demanded Facebook stop the practice, and pre-empting the order coming through this week, the website has gone into lockdown.

According to BBC, Facebook intends to contest the ruling but will comply with the order for the time being.

By shutting visitors out of Facebook, they will no longer be darted with trackers, and “existing cookies for such individuals will be deleted where possible.”