Microsoft, LinkedIn Deal Update: Proposed Concessions to EU May Lead To Acquisition

In an effort to lock in the European Union’s approval for its $26 billion acquisition of LinkedIn, Microsoft has offered concessions directed at addressing competition concerns, Reuters reported Wednesday.

The concessions come after Microsoft announced in June that it signed a deal with LinkedIn to acquire the social professional platform for $26.2 billion in an all-cash deal. Microsoft sold $19.75 billion worth of bonds in August to finance the company’s acquisition of the social platform.

Microsoft has now proposed concessions that would give access to rival networks similar to LinkedIn to Microsoft’s Outlook add-ins program, according to Reuters . The company will also give PC makers like HP and Dell the option to disable a Linkedin shortcut on its desktops.

The latter part of the concession is vital because of Microsoft’s clash with the EU competition authority over the past years and the guideline of using its products to block rivals, which has led to over 2.2 billion euros in fines. The concessions were brought up after feedback from rivals and consumers, sources told Reuters .

The agreement has been criticized by Microsoft rival Salesforce, who has asked European regulators to analyze the acquisition over antitrust and data privacy concerns.

The deal, which will be Microsoft’s largest acquisition in the company’s history, is scheduled to be decided by Dec. 6. The deal has already been approved by the United States, Canada, Brazil and South Africa.


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