Microsoft’s $7.8 billion takeover of Nokia devices and services arm on track for completion in April

Microsoft’s takeover of Nokia’s devices and services division is on track to be completed next month, according to statements issued to investors in both companies.

In November, Nokia shareholders voted in favour of the $7.8 billion ($US7.2 billion) deal, which will see Microsoft licence key Nokia patents and purchase the Finnish communications giants devices and mobile services businesses.

In a statement, Microsoft’s executive vice president of legal and corporate affairs, Brad Smith, says the company is awaiting approval confirmation in a few remaining countries.

“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.

“The completion of this acquisition will mark the first step to bring Microsoft and the Nokia Devices and Services business together. 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.”

For its part, Nokia says in a statement it still awaiting regulatory approval in Asia.

“Nokia and Microsoft have already received most of the required regulatory approvals, including approvals from the European Commission and the US Department of Justice … However, the transaction is pending approvals from certain antitrust authorities in Asia which are still conducting their reviews.”

The company also says that, despite speculation, ongoing legal disputes over taxes in India have no bearing on the sale process to Microsoft.

In a separate statement, Nokia announced it is delaying the publication of its first quarter financial statements until April 29, after the sale is complete, with the company issuing investors with an updated financial calendar for 2014.

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