After three months the European Commission gave Redmond-based Microsoft final approval, on Tuesday, to take over Nokia' mobile device division. The European Commission gave their nod to the $7.2 billion dollar deal one day after the United States Department of Justice put their stamp on the purchase. The clearance of both these hurdles means a final closer to the acquisition that was first announced on September 3, 2013.
With the deal being finalized Microsoft will also see the return of current Nokia CEO Stephen Elop. Mr. Elop step down as an executive at the Redmond-based giant in September of 2010 to take the reigns of Nokia. With Mr. Elop's return it was rumored that he would be replacing Steve Ballmer, who had announce he was stepping down, as CEO but that seems a long shot as Alan Mulally and Satya Nadella are considered the top candidates for the position.
A few months after Mr. Elop took over Nokia it was announced, in February of 2011, they would begin phasing out their Symbian-powered smartphones in favor of Microsoft Windows. The switch over was meant to boost Nokia's sagging smartphone sales but with that never came to fruition with Windows-based smartphones still having a small market-share in an area that is dominated by android and the iPhone.
With the smartphones becoming more of a liability to Nokia and Microsoft growing their own hardware division it the time seemed right for the blockbuster deal.
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