EU conditionally approves Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard

The European Commission (EC), the policy enforcement agency of the European Union (EU), announced on May 15, 2023 that it would approve Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard. Regarding the approval of the acquisition, the EC said, 'By complying with the conditions presented, it is possible to fully address competitive concerns.'

Commission clears acquisition of Activision Blizzard

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In 2022, Microsoft announced that it will acquire Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion (about 9 trillion yen). If Microsoft acquires Activision Blizzard, ``Microsoft may monopolize popular titles such as the Call of Duty series,'' the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) sued Microsoft to prevent the acquisition In addition, gamers have filed class action lawsuits , and Sony has been at the forefront of anti-acquisition groups to criticize the acquisition.

Meanwhile, companies such as Nintendo and NVIDIA have signed agreements with Microsoft to provide Activision Blizzard titles and have approved Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard. Japan's Fair Trade Commission was also investigating Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard, but approved the acquisition as ``not hindering competition''.

Japan's Fair Trade Commission ended the review as Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard 'does not hinder competition', why? -GIGAZINE

In the EU, in January 2023, it was reported that the Fair Trade Commission was planning to issue a warning to Microsoft, saying that Microsoft's acquisition plan may violate antitrust laws, but EC After a detailed investigation by , 'Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard will not hinder competition in the cloud gaming market, where gamers can stream games on their own computers and consoles.'

A market study conducted by the EC showed that Microsoft does no competitive harm to competitors' game subscription services. The EC also said, ``Even if Microsoft made Activision Blizzard's popular Call of Duty series an Xbox exclusive, the series would be less popular in Europe compared to the rest of the world, leading to competition in the console market. will not cause any great harm to However, he points out that Microsoft's acquisition could harm competition in the distribution of PC and console games through cloud game streaming services.

To address concerns about competition in the distribution of PC and console games via its cloud game streaming service, the EC has provided Microsoft with access to Activision Blizzard's PC and console games as a condition of its acquisition of Activision Blizzard. provide a free license for the cloud game streaming service for at least 10 years.' This term automatically grants Activision Blizzard game licenses to competing cloud game streaming services, allowing users to play games from any cloud gaming service.

Regarding the terms given to Microsoft, the EC said, ``The terms will ultimately benefit competition and consumers by making Activision Blizzard games available on a wider variety of devices and platforms than ever before.'' said.

On the other hand, the UK Competition and Market Authority (CMA) announced on April 26, 2023 that it would block Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard because it ``protects cloud gaming options and innovation.'' I'm here. In response to the EC's approval of the acquisition proposal, the CMA said, ``We recognize and respect that the EC takes a different view from the CMA, and we accept the EC's decision.''

However, CMA said, 'Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard will transform the free and open competitive market into'a market bound by Microsoft's games and game stores and sales conditions',' said ``CMA. We plan to reject the acquisition offer by Microsoft and block the transaction.'

in Game, Posted by log1r_ut