Reuters reports that judges in the United States and Canada have approved the $4.5 billion sale of 6,000 Nortel patents to a consortium of bidders led by Apple. Microsoft, Research in Motion, EMC, Ericsson, and Sony were also part of the winning group, which beat out Google for the patents.
Several large technology companies such as Verizon Communications Inc and Hewlett-Packard Co objected to the sale. Most objections were resolved by reiterating the sale did not negate licensing agreements involving the patents included in the sale.
Delaware bankruptcy judge Kevin Gross said it would be a "$4.5 billion mistake" not to approve the sale.
Antitrust regulators are also said to be looking into the sale to determine whether the winning consortium's bid amounted to an unfair coalition effort to shut out Google from key wireless patents. Those concerns have apparently not yet been satisfied, with today's ruling simply pertaining to proper disposition of Nortel's assests with respect to the bankrupt company's creditors.