Microsoft is facing hurdle after hurdle in the Activision Blizzard deal. Just before the new year, Chile approved the merger in phase 1, so things were looking better for Microsoft. But FTC still didn’t have any plans to let Microsoft achieve the union, so before Chile fully approved the deal, Microsoft claimed that FTC’s approach to the acquisition was unconstitutional.
The company has been working hard to make this deal work, but it faced the threat of an EU antitrust warning over the acquisition. FTC has reportedly sued Microsoft to stop the EU from accepting a settlement over the deal.
According to some people familiar with the investigations, Bloomberg reported that the FTC filed a complaint quicker than expected. The main reason for this complaint was to stop any possible negotiations between EU regulators and Microsoft about the settlement.
Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson LLP’s antitrust head Barry Nigro told Bloomberg that the lawsuit filed will likely get out in front of the Europeans to shape the narrative.
According to the report, the FTC filed the complaint just hours after both planned to discuss the settlement. It cannot be a coincidence, but it indeed seems unreal. The FTC wasn’t expected to act until the spring, and it was told to Bloomberg that in such situations, before acting, the settlement terms should be first known globally.
The FTC doesn’t have any plans to let Microsoft do the merger, as the director of FTC’s Bureau of Competition, Holly Vedova, said:
“Microsoft has already shown that it can and will withhold content from its gaming rivals,” said Holly Vedova. “Today we seek to stop Microsoft from gaining control over a leading independent game studio and using it to harm competition in multiple dynamic and fast-growing gaming markets.”
Microsft has no plans to leave the deal, as the company has been facing problems since the agreement started. This $69 billion is Microsft’s largest deal in the video gaming industry, but FTC thinks this will give Microsft the upper hand in the console market.
For now, we can’t say for sure what will happen to this merger as this is going nowhere like this, and there is something going on every month. This controversy is likely to increase even more, so we can only hope things improve as Google and Nvidia are also concerned about this deal.
Aside from that, what do you think Microsoft facing hurdle after hurdle due to this acquisition? What is the best strategy for Microsoft here? Please share your thoughts with us in the comments section.
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