Microsoft moved a step closer to completing an acquisition of AI speech recognition specialist Nuance Communications after securing approval for the proposed $19.7 billion deal from US competition authorities.
In a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, Nuance Communications stated a deadline of 1 June for the government to raise objections to the deal had expired.
This “satisfies one of the conditions to the closing of the merger”.
Under US merger regulations, the companies in question must wait for a period to allow the Federal Trade Commission and the US Department of Justice competition division to review the deal and raise objections if necessary.
Microsoft is targeting a greater presence in healthcare through the acquisition. Nuance Communications provides speech recognition software in the sector, claiming 77 per cent of US hospitals use its technology.
Nuance Communications’ services are also used by enterprises for a range of applications including biometric verification, and it also counts major mobile players including Telefonica, Verizon and Deutsche Telekom as customers.
In addition to US regulatory clearance, the deal must be approved in other territories.
The tie-up is expected to close by the end of 2021.Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back