Microsoft’s proposed acquisition of Activision Blizzard continues to face scrutiny from regulatory agencies globally. In Europe, the examination has reportedly reached a pivotal moment, with the European Union set to deliver a formal antitrust notice to Microsoft.
EU Outlines Objections
Sources familiar with the matter revealed to Politico that the EU communicated its objections to Microsoft’s deal last week. The exact details are still undisclosed, however, it is highly probable that the objections encompass worries about cloud services and the future of major intellectual properties, such as Call of Duty, on alternative platforms.
Microsoft Anticipates UK’s Opposition
As per a report from The New York Times, Microsoft is preparing for objections from the UK’s Competitions & Markets Authority. Microsoft’s legal department reportedly foresees that the CMA will reject the acquisition, much like the FTC did in the United States. Microsoft remains steadfast in its defense of the merits of this deal and is willing to take it to court if necessary.
Timing of Decisions
There is no fixed deadline for the FTC’s case against the acquisition. Decisions on the fate of the deal are expected to be made by the UK and EU by the end of Q1 or early Q2. Microsoft initially aimed to have the acquisition approved by mid-2023, but this timeline may have been affected by resistance from regulators.
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