EU clears Microsoft's Skype acquisition

BRUSSELS Fri Oct 7, 2011 11:57am EDT

Microsoft Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Steve Ballmer (L) and Skype CEO Tony Bates shake hands at their joint news conference in San Francisco, May 10, 2011. REUTERS/Susana Bates

Microsoft Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Steve Ballmer (L) and Skype CEO Tony Bates shake hands at their joint news conference in San Francisco, May 10, 2011.

Credit: Reuters/Susana Bates

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BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Microsoft secured EU approval on Friday to purchase internet voice and video service Skype for $8.5 billion, its biggest ever acquisition.

The European Commission said that its investigation of the takeover showed that the firms' activities mainly overlapped for video communications, where Microsoft is active through its Windows Live Messenger.

"However, the Commission considers that there are no competition concerns in this growing market where numerous players, including Google, are present," it said in a statement.

The deal is expected to lead to new customers for Microsoft's Windows and Office software.

The U.S. Federal Trade Commission cleared the deal in June.

(Reporting By Foo Yun Chee)

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