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Microsoft likely to face an EU antitrust investigation for bundling Teams with Office

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Back in 2020, Salesforce owned Slack filed a complaint with the European Commission against Microsoft for bundling Teams collaboration software with Office productivity suite.  Early this year, the EC confirmed that assessment of Slack’s complaint against Microsoft is ongoing.

“We’re confident that we win on the merits of our product, but we can’t ignore illegal behavior that deprives customers of access to the tools and solutions they want,” said Jonathan Prince, Vice President of Communications and Policy at Slack when they filed complaint against Microsoft back in 2020. “Slack threatens Microsoft’s hold on business email, the cornerstone of Office, which means Slack threatens Microsoft’s lock on enterprise software.”

Early this year, there were reports that Microsoft will stop bundling Teams with Office in the EU region to avoid antitrust investigation. With this change, enterprises can install Office suite with or without Teams based on their preference. Also, Microsoft offered to license Office suite without Teams included.

Today, the Reuters reported that Microsoft is likely to face an antitrust investigation in the coming months since remedy discussions with the EC have hit a roadblock. Microsoft had discussions with the EC and offered to cut the price of its Office product without its Teams app. However, the EC has been seeking a deeper price cut.

“We continue to engage cooperatively with the Commission in its investigation and are open to pragmatic solutions that address its concerns and serve customers well.” – Microsoft

Since the EC is reportedly not satisfied with Microsoft’s price cut for Office without Teams,  it may launch a formal antitrust investigation in the near future. This could have significant implications for Microsoft’s dominance in the enterprise software market, as well as for Slack’s competitiveness in the collaboration space.


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