Microsoft has been working incredibly hard to acquire Activision Blizzard. This has caused the team to go through several battles between regulators to ensure they can finalize the purchase. However, one particular regulator has been firm on not allowing this merger to happen. That is the UK regulator CMA. However, upon winning some additional regulators and filing an appeal process, the CMA has since expressed their desire to discuss this deal again, which prompted the appeal process to be put on hold.
The conversation has been going along for a little while now as we wait to see if Microsoft can address the CMA’s concerns. These concerns were typically based on cloud gaming. A new comment from Microsoft’s president, Brad Smith, stated that the CMA process was going well and that they look forward to finalizing the deal before the October 18, 2023, deadline. We’re finally getting word from the head of Microsoft’s Xbox division, Phil Spencer.
Thanks to The Verge, we’re finding out the memo Phil Spencer sent to staff regarding their CMA provisional deal approval. You can view the entire memo sent by Phil below, but overall, it follows the same statements as Microsoft’s president, Brad Smith. Essentially, Phil is confident that the CMA approval will come as Microsoft answers their concerns regarding cloud gaming. We’ll have to wait for the deal to finalize before we know what was addressed to ensure this deal goes through. There’s always the chance that the deal might not get the approval.
I have an encouraging update to share about our proposed acquisition of Activision Blizzard.
Today, the UK CMA provisionally concluded that the solutions we have offered to address its concerns about the impact of the acquisition on future competition in cloud game streaming are acceptable. This is a positive development and a welcome indicator that our hard work is bringing us closer to our goal.
Prior to making its final decision on whether to clear the transaction, the CMA is soliciting feedback from the industry and public. During this time, we will continue to work toward addressing any remaining concerns and earning approval to close.
We continue to work toward concluding this process by the October 18 deadline and will share more information as we get it. Thanks to everyone whose ongoing efforts have brought us to this point—your hard work and dedication is very much appreciated.
PhilPhil Spencer – The Verge
This approval would be a big one for Microsoft. That would allow the Xbox team to acquire Activision Blizzard. Furthermore, that should add even more content for players to enjoy on Xbox Game Pass. Of course, we know that big franchises like Call of Duty will continue to see launches across multiple platforms, such as the PlayStation 5. That might relieve players who thought this purchase would mean Call of Duty would become exclusive.