EU Commission Approves Microsoft's $69B Activision Deal

    Photo: cnbc

    The Facts

    • EU regulators on Monday approved Microsoft’s $69B deal for the purchase of gaming company Activision Blizzard, which produces popular console and PC games such as the Call of Duty franchise and World of Warcraft.

    • Though an earlier investigation found that the purchase could damage competition in the cloud gaming sector, the European Commission accepted Microsoft's compromise to offer 10-year free licenses to consumers to stream Activision games on competing cloud services.

    The Spin

    Narrative A

    UK and US regulators are correct in their analysis that Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision is anti-competitive, and approval of the deal would provide the tech giant with control of the growing cloud gaming industry. While Microsoft has agreed to license its games to alternative platforms, it would have authority over all terms and conditions. This would undermine a genuine free market by providing one of the world’s largest tech companies with a monopoly in this lucrative industry.

    Narrative B

    Not only is Microsoft not a detriment to competition in the gaming market, but its acquisition of Activision will actually drive competition and allow users to stream their favorite games on any platform they choose. While some concessions needed to be made, this agreement will empower users around the world to control their gaming experience and allow innovation in the rapidly growing cloud gaming sphere. The CMA is wrong in its decision to block Microsoft’s deal, and it should approve the company’s appeal.

    Nerd narrative

    There's an 8% chance that Microsoft will acquire Activision Blizzard by June 30, 2023, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

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