Microsoft confirms Activision Blizzard acquisition is going fast
Microsoft President Brad Smith said that the acquisition of Activision Blizzard is moving very quickly.
It was announced in January that Microsoft would buy Activision Blizzard in a deal worth $68.7 billion – the largest ever deal of its kind in the video game industry.
Microsoft said at the time that it hoped to complete the transaction in the first half of 2023, subject to completion of closing terms and completion of regulatory review.
The US Federal Trade Commission is currently working on an antitrust review of the deal to determine whether the acquisition would give Xbox an unfair competitive advantage.
In a new interview with Belgian business magazine L’Echo, Smith said Microsoft has also received requests for information about the deal from competition regulators in Europe and the UK. He also said he had indicated that the acquisition was now entering its middle phase.
They are moving fast, at least fast enough to close a deal of this magnitude. We have received requests for information on this topic here in Brussels, as well as in London and Washington. We answer questions, provide a briefing, and provide the required information.
The proposed merger between Microsoft and Activision Blizzard would give the Xbox maker exclusive ownership of several notable video game franchises including Call of Duty, Warcraft, Overwatch, Crash Bandicoot and Candy Crush.
If the deal gets regulatory approval, Microsoft said it will continue to release Activision Blizzard games, including Call of Duty titles, on non-Xbox platforms such as PlayStation and Nintendo after the acquisition and beyond existing contractual agreements.
When Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision takes place, after approval by the US Federal Trade Commission, this merger could push Sony down to the third largest gaming company after Tencent and Microsoft.
This comes according to a new report from the Newzoo platform. The company, which specializes in games and esports analytics and market research, believes the combination of revenue from Microsoft and Activision would push the merger into second place, ahead of Sony and Apple and behind Tencent.