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April 02, 2012

Microsoft News - Cadwalader Takes Home Top Honors for Microsoft-Skype Union

By Steve Anderson, Contributing TMCnet Writer

The firm of Cadwalader, Wickership and Taft LLP announced today that their work as Microsoft's antitrust counsel in Microsoft's recent acquisition of Skype (News - Alert) has garnered them the Merger Control Matter of the Year - Europe award at the Global Competition Review Awards 2012, held March 27.

Cadwalader's Antitrust Group, including partners Charles Rule and Jonathan Kanter, as well as Special Counsel Amy Ray, and associates Elizabeth Wright, Nandu Macharaju, Ngoc Hulbig and Zachary Martin, took home the award following its successful work on the Microsoft (News - Alert)-Skype case, a merger representing fully $8.5 billion in business.

The merger itself required approval across a laundry list of jurisdictions in both Europe and the United States, and ended up a success, with Microsoft acquiring Skype in May of 2011. Since Skype's operations were spread out across a wide swath of Europe – Microsoft's Skype division headquarters, for example, is in Luxembourg, and 44 percent of the division is located in offices in Estonia – it's easy to see how getting regulatory approval across several different countries, and that before the overarching body of the European Union got involved, would have been difficult for most anyone.

Cadwalader, meanwhile, sees the venture as a great success overall. Having worked with Microsoft on previous occasions, Cadwalader is considering this case not only an example for other companies, but also a "testament to the Antitrust Group's ability to assist clients navigating the increasingly complex regulatory environment." And Cadwalader is no stranger to working with major names; it’s previously worked with Quest Software (News - Alert), among others.

The award, meanwhile, serves as proof its claims are quite valid. There were, after all, few larger mergers than this one going on in 2011, so saying that Cadwalader's Antitrust Group worked on one of the year's biggest mergers is not out of line. And while it would be easy to say that, perhaps, the regulatory environment should not be quite as complex as it is, it's plain that Cadwalader has the skill and manpower to handle the job as it is. They've got quite the award to prove it, after all.

Edited by Carrie Schmelkin

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