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Microsoft Fails to Meet Timeline on Nokia Buyout

Microsoft had announced in September 2013 that it was set to acquire Nokia’s devices & services business and also license Nokia’s patents and mapping service. Microsoft, at the time, told investors that the transaction worth EUR 5.44 billion was “expected to close in the first quarter of 2014, subject to approval by Nokia’s shareholders, regulatory approvals and other closing conditions.” But, it seems clear that Microsoft will not be able to complete the deal within the first quarter.

On Sunday, Brad Smith, General Counsel and Executive Vice President, Legal & Corporate Affairs, Microsoft, posted an update on the matter on Microsoft’s official blog. According to Smith, the deal will not be closed in the first quarter of 2014 as predicted.

Smith wrote, “We are nearing the final stages of our global regulatory approval process – to date we have received approvals from regulatory authorities in 15 markets on five continents. Currently, we are awaiting approval confirmation in the final markets. This work has been progressing, and we expect to close next month, in April 2014.”

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Claiming that there were no other impediments to closing the deal except the delay over regulatory approvals, Smith said the completion of the acquisition “Our acquisition will accelerate our mobile-first, cloud-first imperatives. We’re looking forward to accelerating innovation and market adoption for Windows Phones and introducing the next billion customers to Microsoft services via Nokia mobile phones.”

While Smith says the top priority of Microsoft “continues to be maintaining a great experience” for its customers, now customers of Nokia handsets would become Microsoft’s customers, too. And experts think that Microsoft might be also banking on Android software in the future as recently Nokia launched Android powered handsets, and according to the company, it was done with Microsoft’s knowledge.

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