Microsoft Acquisition of Activision Blizzard Approved by EU

19 May 2023 at 19:28 in Gaming News with no comments

EU regulators have approved Microsoft’s attempted acquisition of Activision Blizzard.

By Daniel Burrows Daniel

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  Microsoft’s Activision Blizzard Acquisition Approved by EU Commision  

Key Facts

  • Microsoft is attempting to acquire Activision Blizzard in a record-breaking $69 billion deal.
  • The EU Commission has approved the acquisition.
  • Despite concerns Microsoft could remove Activision games from PlayStation, they accepted Microsoft’s plans to improve cloud gaming.



The European Commission has approved Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard, citing the “significant improvement for cloud gaming” as a primary reason for the approval.

  Microsoft Activision Blizzard Deal Approved  

Concerns have been raised since the announcement from Microsoft that they intend to acquire Activision Blizzard for a record $69 billion, with the main concern surrounding the idea that Microsoft could remove Activision games like Call of Duty from the PlayStation store, making them an Xbox exclusive.

The Commission’s in-depth market investigation uncovered and focused on the following points:

  • Microsoft would have no incentive to refuse to distribute Activision’s games to Sony, which is the leading distributor of console games worldwide.
  • Even if Microsoft did decide to withdraw Activision’s games from the PlayStation, this would not significantly harm competition in the consoles market.
  • Even without this transaction, Activision would not have made its games available for multi-game subscription services, as this would cannibalize sales of individual games.
  • The acquisition would harm competition in the distribution of PC and console games via cloud game streaming services, an innovative market segment that could transform the way many gamers play video games.
  • If Microsoft made Activision’s games exclusive to its own cloud game streaming service, Microsoft could also strengthen the position of Windows in the market for PC operating systems.

Despite the concerns, the Commission was satisfied that Microsoft provided solutions to any Xbox exclusivity by providing a free license allowing gamers to stream any Activision game they own via cloud services for at least ten years.

This would not mean that Microsoft would not remove Activision Blizzard games like CoD from the PlayStation Store, but any CoD or other Activision game you own would still be available for you to play via cloud gaming.

The European Commission’s approval is a step forward for Microsoft. However, they still need to convince the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority through an appeal after the regulator recently blocked the acquisition.




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