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Thursday, 12 December 2013 10:40

Cisco loses court battle over Skype

Written by Nick Farrell



Microsoft can buy it after all

Networking giant Cisco has lost a court case where it was trying to stop Microsoft buying Skype. Microsoft wrote a $8.5 billion cheque to takeover of messaging service Skype. But Cisco objected saying that that the 2011 deal would harm competition.

Now Europe's second-highest court ruled against claims by rival Cisco were rubbish and Redmond can continue to market Skype's video calls to consumers and businesses without making any concessions to Cisco or others offering similar products. It seems that the court felt that the only reason that Cisco was worried about the deal was because it flogged expensive hardware to help companies with video conferencing, while Microsoft's alternative, based on Skype, can do much the same via a computer equipped with a webcam.

Cisco said the European Commission was wrong to approve the deal without demanding concessions from Microsoft. The Luxembourg-based General Court said Cisco had failed to show that the takeover would harm competition. The court also pointed out that Cisco had a huge share of the enterprise communications market and the existence of other rivals prevent Microsoft from impeding competition in this sector.

Nick Farrell

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