Just yesterday, the final decision from the UK regulator shocked Microsoft as the CMA blocked the Microsoft-Activision Blizzard deal. Following the decision, Microsoft’s boss has expressed his disappointment, saying that the European Union is better for business.
While talking to the BBC, Brad Smith, the President of Microsoft, spoke about how the CMA’s decision shook people’s confidence. He went on to say that it marked the darkest day for Microsoft in Britain. Brad Smith stated:
“This decision is probably the darkest day in our four decades in britain.”
Moreover, Brad Smith also implied that this decision might impact Microsoft’s future UK investments. He said:
“the European Union is a more attractive place to start a business than the UK.”
Brad Smith said that people had hoped the UK would build a structure that would be more flexible, have better technology, and would be a better place to invest.
However, chief executive of CMA Sarah Cardell disagrees with Brad Smith, saying that the UK is open for business. She further stated that the CMA decision is supporting competition in the UK.
Previously, the regulator was expected to approve the Activision Blizzard acquisition after concessions. However, this did not happen, and Microsoft has decided to appeal the decision against the CMA.
Analysts have also predicted that this appeal could mean that Microsoft and Activision Blizzard will continue to struggle for this deal for several months, potentially dragging till 2024.
Now Microsoft’s hopes lie in regulators like the FTC and European Commission. The former has previously sued Microsoft over the deal, leaving little hope for an agreement with the US regulator.
However, Microsoft is still optimistic about the deal and intends to complete the Activision Blizzard acquisition.
Is the CMA’s decision fair to you? Do you agree with Brad Smith’s statement? Do you still think Microsoft can complete the $68.7 Billion acquisition? Let’s discuss this in the comments below.
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