Thu. Dec 12th, 2019




European Union Court Clears Microsoft Takeover of Skype After Cisco’s Challenge

Skype, Microsoft, Steve Ballmer

A European Union court sided with Microsoft’s $8.5 billion takeover of Skype and said the acquisition wouldn’t hinder competition in the European Union despite a challenge to the contrary by U.S. network equipment maker Cisco — the world’s top network equipment manufacturer — and Milan-based Messagenet, who claimed the 2011 deal harmed competition.

As reported by Reuters, the Luxembourg-based General Court said Cisco had failed to show that the takeover would harm competition after Cisco said at a May hearing that the acquisition created a monopoly and that the EU was wrong to approve the deal without concessions from Redmond.

The European Union finds that Microsoft’s Skype acquisition “does not restrict competition”

“Microsoft’s acquisition of Skype is compatible with the (European Union’s) internal market. The merger does not restrict competition either on the consumer video communications market or on the business video communications market,” the judges said.

A European Union antitrust regulator said the judgement by the court “confirms that the Commission was correct in its assessment that the acquisition of Skype by Microsoft would not significantly impede effective competition in the European Economic Area.” Of course, the General Court’s decision can be appealed at the highest European court, the European Court of Justice, within the next two months.