Cisco Acquisition of Tandberg

On March 29, 2010, Cisco Systems, Inc. received approval from the European Commission for its proposed acquisition of Tandberg ASA, the largest provider of videoconferencing equipment in the world. On that same day, the Department of Justice announced that it would not challenge the acquisition in light of commitments Cisco made to the EC to facilitate interoperability between Cisco’s telepresence products and those of other companies. Professor Richard Gilbert led Compass Lexecon’s efforts to help Cisco gain antitrust approvals for this deal in the US and EU. Professor Gilbert was supported by Jim Ratliff, Bret Dickey, and Kun Huang in the Oakland office. The Compass Lexecon team prepared multiple submissions to both the DOJ and DG Comp stressing the dynamic nature of the video collaboration industry. Indeed it was the “evolving nature of the videoconferencing market” that was primarily cited by the Antitrust Division in support of its conclusion that the deal would not likely be anticompetitive. The transaction closed on April 18, 2010. We worked primarily with Gil Ohana of Cisco, and Sven Voelcker, Hartmut Schneider, Cormac O’Daly, and Jim Lowe at WilmerHale.