Microsoft gets green light from Chinese authorities about Nokia acquisition


It’s been a while since Microsoft announced the acquisition of the Devices and Services division of Nokia. The acquisition was expected to be completed by the end of the first quarter, but it was pushed back. The acquisition had to get approval from various regulatory authorities in different regions. Recently, Microsoft announced it has received approval from Chinese Ministry of Commerce about its purchase of Nokia’s devices business – with some conditions. 

“The Chinese Ministry of Commerce (MOFCOM) on Tuesday announced that it has approved our purchase of Nokia’s Devices and Services business subject to certain conditions. MOFCOM’s decision effectively adopts Microsoft’s current patent licensing practices. In reaching its decision, MOFCOM concluded after its investigation that Microsoft holds approximately 200 patent families that are necessary to build an Android smartphone,” says Microsoft’s David Howard. 

Microsoft also mentioned the acquisition has been cleared to close in 16 markets, and thinks the approval in China is a big step towards its closure. Other than China, the acquisition has received the green light from the European Commission, the U.S. Department of Justice, and numerous other regions. 

The approval process involved review of Nokia’s patent licensing practices by several competing authorities around the world. “During that process, no authority has challenged Nokia’s compliance with its FRAND undertakings related to standard-essential patents (licensing on fair, reasonable and non-discriminatory terms) or requested that Nokia make changes to its licensing program or royalty terms,” says Nokia in a press release. 

There’s still no exact completion date announced, but Nokia says the deal will be closed by the end of this month. 

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