European Commission gives the go-ahead for Microsoft’s acquisition of Nokia

5 Dec 2013

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Nokia's head office in Espoo, Finland

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Microsoft’s purchase of Nokia’s devices and services division has been granted approval by the European Commission, which found the €5.44bn deal will not substantially harm competition.

The acquisition is due to be wrapped up in the first quarter of 2014.

The European Commission gave the all-clear for the deal on Wednesday, following approval from the US Federal Trade Commission over the weekend.

Microsoft will pay €3.79bn to purchase the devices and services unit and a further €1.65bn to license Nokia’s patents.

“There are only modest overlaps between the parties’ activities and the links between Microsoft’s mobile operating systems, mobile applications and enterprise mail server software with Nokia’s smart mobile devices are unlikely to lead to competitors being shut out from the market,” the European Commission stated.

The deal between the two tech giants was announced in September, with then-CEO of Microsoft Steve Ballmer heralding it as “bold step into the future – a win-win for employees, shareholders and consumers of both companies.”

In November, Nokia’s shareholders gave their seal of approval to the deal at a meeting in the Finnish capital of Helsinki. A landslide 99.7pc of shareholders who voted, voted in favour of the acquisition.

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Elaine Burke is managing editor of Siliconrepublic.com

editorial@siliconrepublic.com