The UK’s competition watchdog, the Competition Markets Authority (CMA), has officially approved Microsoft’s offer to acquire Activision Blizzard, one of the leading video game manufacturers in the world. This announcement was the last step for the purchase, which now becomes official.
Microsoft and Activision, green light from the UK guarantor
The approval comes after a series of exchanges and reviews by regulatory authorities, who had initially blocked the deal due to concerns about the concentration of power in the video game industry. However, Microsoft responded to regulatory concerns and made significant changes to the deal to satisfy authorities.
Microsoft has assured that it will give up the rights to distribute Activision’s games on consoles and PC via cloud to French video game publisher Ubisoft. This step helps ensure that Microsoft does not have a significant stranglehold on the cloud gaming market.
The CEO of the CMA, Sarah Cardell said the restructured deal will “maintain competitive pricing” in the video game industry and offer consumers more choice and better services.
The acquisition of Activision Blizzard further solidifies Microsoft as a gaming giant and raises concerns among rivals, particularly Sony, owner of the PlayStation console. Sony has expressed concern that blockbuster titles like Call of Duty could become exclusive to Xbox over time, putting its leadership position in the industry at risk.
The deal also strengthens Microsoft’s position in the game streaming industry. The company intends to use Activision Blizzard’s titles for enrich its Xbox Game Pass streaming service, allowing members to access a vast catalog of games via the cloud.
However, the guarantor guaranteed that this agreement will not undermine competition on the market. Gamers will see this in the coming years, with the price of video games and cloud subscriptions.