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EU sets February deadline to decide Google's bid for Motorola

The European Commission said it will finish its inquiry into the pending Google/Motorola merger by February 13.

European regulators said Thursday that they have set a new deadline of February 13 to decide the fate of Google's acquisition of Motorola Mobility, Reuters reported.

Regulators for the European Union originally said they'd make a decision on the merger by January 10. But in December, the EU Commission delayed the deadline stating that it wanted to review additional documents that Google had submitted to support its case.

Google announced its plans to buy Motorola in August for $12.5 billion. Google, which makes the mobile operating system, Android, said it plans to run Motorola as a separate company. Google has said it is interested in the troubled cell phone maker mainly for its strong patent portfolio. Google and many of its handset partners that use the Android operating system have been fending off several lawsuits in the last few years for possible patent infringement.

U.S. regulators are also still evaluating the deal.

Motorola said in a statement that it expects to close the deal in early 2012.

The Company continues to work closely with Google to complete the proposed acquisition of Motorola Mobility as expeditiously as possible. The Company notes that the transaction remains subject to various closing conditions, and currently expects the transaction to close in early 2012 once all conditions have been satisfied. The Company reminds stockholders that it is possible that the failure to timely meet such conditions or other factors outside of the Company's control could delay or prevent completion of the transaction altogether.