Microsoft has put in a £607m bid to buy Norwegian search company Fast to offer users of its software a search tool for unstructured data.
Jeff Raikes, president of the Microsoft Business Division, said, "Until now organisations have been forced to choose between powerful, high-end search technologies or more mainstream infrastructure."
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Through the acquisition of Fast, Microsoft hopes to offer users a way to buy data and search tools from a single supplier.
In addition to bolstering its enterprise search efforts, Microsoft said the Fast acquisition increases its research and development presence in Europe, complementing existing research teams in Cambridge and Copenhagen with new capabilities in Norway.
Users of Fast include law firm Norton Rose.