Feeds

European Commission gives Microsoft/Nokia merger the green light

Redmond to march into Finland unopposed

3 Big data security analytics techniques

The European Commission has approved the merger between Microsoft and Nokia, clearing the way for Redmond to take over the Finnish firm's smartphone business.

The Commission published its findings in a press release on Wednesday, saying that it did not believe Microsoft's acquisition of Nokia raised any concerns under EU antitrust regulations.

Among the topics the Commission considered were whether Microsoft would be likely to withhold its Windows Phone OS from third parties following the merger, whether it would be likely to restrict the use of its mobile apps to its own devices, and whether it would try to limit other device makers' ability to interoperate with Exchange Server.

In each case, the Commission found that Microsoft would be unlikely to change its current behavior post-merger, and that in some cases, doing so would weaken its own competitive position. In sum:

The Commission concluded that the transaction would not raise any competition concerns, in particular because 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 decision comes just days after US regulators also gave the merger the thumbs-up. Nokia's shareholders approved the deal at a mid-November meeting in Helsinki, although the mood among many was glum.

Microsoft plans to take over "substantially all" of Nokia's Devices & Services business, including its Windows Phone–based Lumia smartphone line. Former Nokia CEO and past Microsoft employee Stephen Elop is expected to return to Redmond to head the division, although he is also thought to be a front-runner to take over the chief executive role when Steve Ballmer leaves.

A few more regulatory hurdles remain before the deal is done, but Microsoft CFO Amy Hood said during the company's most recent earnings conference call that she expects the transaction to close in the first calendar quarter of 2014.

"We look forward to the date when our partners at Nokia will become members of the Microsoft family," a Redmond spokesperson said in an emailed statement, "and are pleased that the European Commission has cleared the deal without conditions."  ®

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

More from The Register

next story
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Audio fans, prepare yourself for the Second Coming ... of Blu-ray
High Fidelity Pure Audio – is this what your ears have been waiting for?
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Record labels sue Pandora over vintage song royalties
Companies want payout on recordings made before 1972
Ex–Apple CEO John Sculley: Ousting Steve Jobs 'was a mistake'
Twenty-nine years later, post-Pepsi exec has flat-forehead moment
Number crunching suggests Yahoo! US is worth less than nothing
China and Japan holdings worth more than entire company
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.