High Noon for Microsoft in Europe

Five years after they began probing the bundling of Media Player with Windows, the EU's antitrust probers are poised to reveal their findings.

Tick, tock, tick, tock. That's the sound of the clock counting down for Microsoft in Europe, where on Mar. 15, regulators moved a step closer to finding it guilty of antitrust violations. Behind closed doors in Brussels, the European Union's Competition Directorate, under the leadership of steely Italian lawyer Mario Monti, presented to the heads of the competition agencies from each of the EU's 15 member states the results of its five-year investigation.

According to a statement from Monti's office, the national competition authorities unanimously approved the finding. On Mar. 22, the 15 competition heads will meet again to review Monti's proposed remedies and sanction a fine that could run to the billions of dollars. The final decision will likely be announced a few days later.

News source: BusinessWeek Online

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