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Microsoft Engages with CISPE to Address Antitrust Concerns in Europe

Microsoft is in talks with Cloud Infrastructure Services Providers in Europe (CISPE) to tackle its antitrust case in Europe. The case concerns Microsoft’s cloud market dominance, allegedly fueled by technical and financial constraints, leading to customer lock-in. Reuters reports Microsoft’s initiative aims to evade a comprehensive EU investigation, potentially sparing fines, mandates, and reputation harm.

Microsoft is seeking a deal with CISPE, representing 26 EU cloud providers, excluding Google. CISPE filed a complaint with the European Commission in 2022, alleging Microsoft’s licensing terms harmed EU competition.

In a statement to Reuters, CISPE confirmed discussions with Microsoft aimed at resolving unfair software licensing issues. Early-stage talks are underway, with both sides exploring potential resolutions. CISPE stressed the need for “substantive progress” by early 2024, suggesting Microsoft might agree to avoid an EU investigation.

Microsoft has faced $1.7 billion in EU antitrust fines in the past decade, prompting a more cooperative stance. Other companies are also enhancing interoperability amid EU pressure for a competitive landscape.

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