Mitel Shareholders Give Aastra Deal Thumbs-Up

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**Editor's Note: Please click here for a recap of the biggest channel-impacting mergers in Q3 2013.**

Mitel Networks Corp. has gotten the go-ahead from its shareholders to complete the planned, $374 million acquisition of Aastra Technologies.

Mitel is buying all of Aastra's outstanding common shares for $6.52 in cash plus 3.6 Mitel common shares per each Aastra common share.

The deal required approval of Mitel's shareholders by majority vote, which was given via written consent. It now must be approved by at least two-thirds of Aastra shareholders during a meeting slated to take place in January.

A Mitel-Aastra transaction also still must receive approvals from the Canadian government.

And while both Mitel and Aastra are based in Canada, Aastra holds more market share in Europe, particularly the western portion. Both companies specialize in premises and cloud unified communications, and Aastra makes one of the three Microsoft Lync-certified phone sets. Observers say Mitel's challenge will be to increase revenue, and use the PrairieFrye and Aastra transactions to strengthen its Lync strategy.

Mitel CEO Rich McBee will remain in charge of the combined company – which will keep its headquarters in Ottawa and operate under the Mitel name – while Aastra's co-CEO, Francis Shen, will become chief strategy officer and Tony Shen will serve as COO.

Mitel expects the purchase to wrap up in the first quarter of 2014.

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