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Software, Nuance Communications Inc

Microsoft buys speech recognition firm Nuance in a $16 billion deal

The deal will give Microsoft a foothold in health-care technology

4/12/2021 8:26:00 PM

LinkedIn co-founder reidhoffman had this to say about Microsoft's $16B acquisition of Nuance: 'One of the things I learned [in LinkedIn's combination with Microsoft] ... is how good Satya and his team are at actually integrating companies.' CNBCTechCheck

The deal will give Microsoft a foothold in health-care technology

before the deal was derailed.The Nuance acquisition represents Microsoft's largest acquisition since it bought LinkedIn for more than $26 billion in 2016. Last month,.Shares of Nuance were up 18% Monday morning. Microsoft shares were slightly positive.

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Nuance would be aligned with the part of Microsoft's business that serves businesses and governments. Nuance derives revenue by selling tools for recognizing and transcribing speech in doctor office visits, customer-service calls and voicemails. In its announcement, Microsoft said Nuance's technology will be used to augment Microsoft's cloud products for health care, which were launched last year.

In an interview on CNBC's "Squawk on the Street" Monday, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella highlighted Nuance's health care tools as the key driver behind the acquisition."We've seen a massive accelearation of digital transformation… health care in particular," Nadella said. "When you think about the provider market… digital tech is going to be the key."

Nuance reported $7 million in net income on about $346 million in revenue inthe fourth quarterof 2020, with revenue declining 4% on an annualized basis. Nuance was founded in 1992, and had 7,100 employees as of September.Microsoft said Nuance CEO Mark Benjamin will remain at the company and report to Scott Guthrie,who is in charge of Microsoft's cloud and artificial intelligence businesses.

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