Europe and the UK will scrutinize Microsofts acquisition of Activision

Europe and the UK will scrutinize Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision

Microsoft’s $68.7 billion acquisition of gaming giant Activision Blizzard is under scrutiny by the EU and UK. Antitrust authorities in Brussels and London fear that the deal could be anti-competitive and could result in other companies in the gaming market losing access to Call of Duty blockbusters and other products.

    Image source:

Image source:

Two weeks ago, Britain’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) became the first regulator to announce its intention to subject the deal to an in-depth scrutiny if Microsoft fails to allay the regulator’s fears that the fallout from the acquisition will have a significant impact within five days in the gambling market. The company decided not to put forward any arguments at all, as it was not sure which of them the regulator might agree to – in the initial stages of the review, the agency does not consider some arguments, including the obligation to maintain access to goods or services (except on rare occasions cases).

Since the two companies announced their intentions, consultations between representatives of the software and gaming giants with Brussels have not stopped, and this suggests that European officials will approach the case with all due diligence. The Brussels investigation is expected to be lengthy given the size of the deal, the nature of the buyer and growing concerns from competitors, particularly Sony. financial times citing their own sources.

    Image source: efes /

Image source: efes /

The Japanese company recently accused Microsoft of misleading gaming industry representatives and regulators about its plans to keep Call of Duty on the PlayStation. According to Sony, the game may not be available on its consoles in three years.

The actions of UK antitrust officials highlight the problems Microsoft must overcome to complete the biggest deal – the group hopes to do so by June next year but first needs the appropriate approvals from the relevant authorities in a number of countries. from the US to New Zealand. To make matters worse, authorities in many states have tightened their policies on takeovers by tech giants.

Microsoft’s competitors fear that the company will formulate its commitments in such a way that it can later close access to large projects for other market participants – Sony and others need guarantees that all games will remain on competing platforms “on equal terms” and forever.” Microsoft will be able to assume such commitments only in the second phase of the transaction’s review, when an independent commission will subject them to a detailed analysis and be ready to discuss possible solutions to potential problems in the context of antitrust practice.

About the author

Alan Foster

Alan Foster covers computers and games and all the news in the gaming industry.

Add Comment

Click here to post a comment