The European Commission, the EU's competition watchdog, has approved Hewlett-Packard’s bid to acquire networking equipment maker 3com in a $2.7 billion deal as the EC concluded that the deal will not threaten the competition nor devoid customers of choices.
In an official statement released by the EC, the European regulator said that the investigation pertaining to the deal had been concluded and that there was no reason to believe that the acquisition will harm the competition or violate anti-trust regulation.
The EC said that “The Commission’s investigation confirmed that the merged company would continue to face a number of global and effective competitors, giving customers the choice from a range of alternative providers for switches and routers.”
HP had moved to acquire 3com in an attempt to boost its market standing in the $40 billion networking market which is dominated by technology vendor Cisco. HP incidentally plans to integrate 3com technology with its ProCurve networking business line.
The 3com acquisition will also enable HP to take on technology heavyweights such as IBM, Oracle, Dell and Cisco in the converged data center market and allow it to make a niche for itself in the Chinese market. The company expects to close the deal in the second quarter of 2010.
Another big name brand bites the dust. 3Com was one of the most recognisable technology names in the early 1990's and in 1997 merged with U.S.Robotics who launched the Palm PDA brand. However, unlike Cisco and other successful networking companies, it fell to grasp the growing importance of the internet and mobile communications.