DoJ, EC give Cisco a pass on Tandberg acquisition

The Department of Justice on Monday said that it will not sue to block Cisco’s acquisition of videoconferencing provider Tandberg, saying that the merger review had resolved the significant anticompetitive concerns.

Tandberg, a Norwegian firm, had been a competitor to Cisco in the area of telepresence, an emerging field where high-resolution video facilitates virtual meetings.

But the DoJ concluded that the market is still young enough that it is likely to remain briskly competitive even after the $3 billion deal combines the two companies.

Christine Varney, the DoJ’s antitrust chief, also noted the close cooperation between her team and authorities at the European Commission, who were conducting their own antitrust review and secured commitments from Cisco that its telepresence equipment would be interoperable with its competitors’ offerings as part of an effort to develop open standards in the marketplace and preserve competition.

“This investigation was a model of international cooperation between the United States and the European Commission,” Varney said in a statement. “The parties should be commended for making every effort to facilitate the close working relationship between the Department of Justice and the European Commission.”

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