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Minister of Industry Christian Paradis (Sean Kilpatrick/THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Minister of Industry Christian Paradis (Sean Kilpatrick/THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Ottawa won't review Nortel patent sale Add to ...

Industry Minister Christian Paradis says the $4.5-billion (U.S.) sale of Nortel's patents to a consortium including Research In Motion Ltd. does not need to be reviewed under the Investment Canada Act.

The Minister says that based on the accounting value of the patents the sale does not need to be reviewed because it does not meet the threshold.

Deals where the book value of the assets are worth $312-million or more require review.

According to the Minister, based on the information provided and Nortel's 2010 financial statements, the patents have a book value less than that level.

However, the sale price generated from the auction was far greater because of market interest in the patents and their implications for the booming wireless sector.

In addition to RIM, the consortium dubbed Rockstar by one New York patent lawyer includes Apple Inc., EMC Corp., Telefon AB LM Ericsson, Microsoft Corp. and Sony Corp.

The group beat out Google and others for the more than 6,000 patents, which include technology that is expected to be the backbone of wireless networks for the next decade.

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