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May 22, 1997updated 05 Sep 2016 12:24pm

MICROSOFT SAYS PRESENCE IN VALLEY INSTRUMENTAL IN WEBTV BUY

By CBR Staff Writer

Microsoft Corp, which is now facing anti-trust scrutiny from competitors and the US Department of Justice concerning its proposed acquisition of WebTV Networks Inc (CI No 3,165), is apparently offering a new reason why it wants the deal to go through. According to a Bloomberg report, in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Microsoft said that part of the reason it is ready to hand over $425m for Palo Alto-based WebTV, is to increase its presence in the important employment market of Silicon Valley. This statement comes at a time when Microsoft is facing a lawsuit from Borland International Inc alleging that Redmond has been routinely poaching its employees in California (CI No 3,156). Microsoft sees the extension of its operations into the Valley as leverage in the recruitment battles for internet-savvy engineers that have sent salaries, even for inexperienced graduates, soaring in the past five years. At any rate, Microsoft’s recruitment needs shouldn’t have any bearing on the anti-trust decision. A spokesperson for the DOJ said that an employment matter such as recruitment wouldn’t change the review process and added that he’d never seen the issue raised in an anti-trust case. á

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