Microsoft is said to be in talks with Nuance about a possible acquisition. Nuance specialises in speech recognition and processing, a technology that Microsoft would like to use for solutions in the healthcare industry. Although the solution could be used in many more Microsoft products.
The rumour comes from Bloomberg, which bases itself on its own sources familiar with the matter. Microsoft would be offering to pay 56 dollars (47 euros) per share for the company. This would bring the total value of the company to over 13 billion euros. Shares in Nuance currently sell for about 47 dollars, less than 40 euros. If the deal actually goes through, an official announcement would follow in the coming week.
Nuance specialises in recognising and processing speech. It focuses mainly on the healthcare industry and customer service. However, the company also contributed to the development of Siri, Apple’s voice assistant. So Microsoft could possibly improve their Cortana assistant with this acquisition.
Microsoft and Nuance already work together on speech-related technologies, such as a service that records conversations from doctor’s visits and processes the data in the patient’s medical file. The acquisition would allow Microsoft to expand in the area of speech recognition by, for example, adding more transcription and call processing capabilities to Teams.
Last autumn, Microsoft released Cloud for Healthcare, a specific solution for the healthcare industry. Further integration of Nuance’s capabilities could also add value here.
Other Microsoft acquisitions
Nuance is not the only major acquisition that Microsoft is pursuing. There are persistent rumours that the company is in talks with social medium Discord about an acquisition. Microsoft would be prepared to pay 10 billion dollars (8.5 billion euros) for the platform. Last autumn, Microsoft paid 7.5 billion dollars (6.3 billion euros) for game developer Zenimax, best known as the parent company of Bethesda and id Software.
Both Microsoft and Nuance did not respond to questions from Bloomberg.