European Commission Approves Apples Purchase of Beats

Beats-by-DreThe European Commission has given its approval to Apples acquisition of Beats Electronics and Beats Music.

The commission concluded that the $3bn (£1.77bn) buyout passes merger regulations and Apple and Beats combined marketshare in both the headphones and streaming music markets is low enough to not materially affect competition.

Discussing the headphones market, the European Commissions ruling namechecked Bose, Sennheiser and Sony as among the global competitors that remained, and noted that Apple and Beats respective headphones differ considerably in functionality and design.

Meanwhile, the music streaming service offered by Apple and Beats Music, while not currently available in the European Economic Area, was deemed acceptable should it expand into Europe, given the presence of existing services like Spotify and Deezer.

The commission also noted that “the transaction would not give Apple the ability and incentive to shut out competing streaming services from access to iOS” because of the size and existing market shares of its rivals.

Apple is yet to receive approval for the Beats acquisition in the United States, although Apple has said it expects the deal to be closed sometime in Q3 2014.