As Microsoft’s 69 billion dollar ordeal to acquire Activision/Blizzard/King continues, the CEO of Microsoft, Satya Nadella, weighs in on the ongoing battle in a recent interview with CNBC. He feels that this deal would benefit gamers and publishers, and this is a great opportunity, and he’s waiting to see how this all plays out. He sees this as the most pro-competitive thing he’s ever seen, and it checks all the blocks, and he’s surprised why the UK is against the deal.
He was also asked if it came to it, would Microsoft sell Activision/Blizzard products in Europe but not the UK? This is a question that many of us have wondered about as well. Satya Nadella’s reply was simple yet forward, “Let’s wait for it all to play out.”
You can watch/listen to this discussion in the video below, starting at the 3:03 mark.
Microsoft announced on January 18, 2022, its intent to acquire Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion in cash. Under the terms of the agreement, which were expected to close by Spring 2023 pending regulatory and shareholder approval, Microsoft would acquire and own Activision, Blizzard Entertainment, and King under the Xbox Game Studios division.
This acquisition would give Microsoft ownership of franchises such as Call of Duty, Crash Bandicoot, Spyro, Warcraft, StarCraft, Diablo, Overwatch, and Candy Crush. If approved by international regulators, it would be the largest video game acquisition in history. This follows the company’s acquisition of another publisher/developer, ZeniMax-Bethesda. Several countries have endorsed the merger, with the European Commission being the most recent.
The U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), however, have filed complaints to block the acquisition because the merger would hinder competition. Microsft and Activision/Blizzard have stated they are going to appeal this. Sony has publicly argued against the union, claiming that the combined company would deny the PlayStation platform of games like Call of Duty. Since then, Microsoft has already extended deals to various Activision/Blizzard/King games to multiple companies, including Nintendo.