Nokia Siemens Purchase Of Motorola Wireless Delayed

China's antitrust regulators have not yet approved the sale, which was expected to be completed this year.

William Gardner

December 29, 2010

2 Min Read
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Motorola's effort to break itself up has hit a speed bump, as its plan to spin off its public carrier wireless network infrastructure assets to Nokia Siemens Networks has been delayed from the end of 2010 to the first quarter of 2011.

Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN) indicated the delay was due to a lack of regulatory approval from the anti-monopoly bureau of China's Ministry of Commerce. All other regulatory examinations have been obtained, NSN said, and the Chinese agency is continuing its review process.

"This delay is disappointing, but we're looking forward to completing the acquisition early in the new year," said Rajeev Suri, NSN CEO, in a statement. "We are continuing to work closely with the authority in China to finalize the clearance process in that country. We recognize its efforts in addressing this case as a matter of importance."

The spinoff of its mobile infrastructure was announced by Motorola last July after the company was pressured to break itself up by Wall Street financier and raider Carl Icahn, who argued the company was worth more in pieces than as a whole. Motorola is in the process of splitting into two operations in the new year -- a mobile devices and set-top box unit and an enterprise mobility/public safety unit. The mobile infrastructure unit to be transferred to NSN is not directly involved with the other Motorola units.

NSN said it has received antitrust clearance from regulatory agencies in the United States, the European Union, Brazil, Japan, Russia, South Africa, Taiwan, and Turkey.

In July, Harbinger Capital Partners had announced it selected NSN to build its proposed 4G long-term evolution (LTE) combo terrestrial-satellite network in a $7 billion deal. Called LightSquared, the network recently launched a satellite successfully from Kazakhstan.


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