December 7 leaders Microsoft met with the chairs of the US Federal Trade Commission in order to finalize their deal with Activision Blizzard and prove that it will not harm competition in the gaming market. The corporation’s arguments were not enough, and the US FTC refused to approve the acquisition of the publishing house for $67 billion.
On the evening of December 8, the trade commission announced its decision to sue Microsoft — there she will try to completely block the deal.
After reviewing the arguments of the parties, the regulators concluded that the purchase of Activision Blizzard would allow Microsoft to suppress its competitors and harm the market for consoles, subscription services and cloud platforms..
Experts noted that the risk of Call of Duty becoming an Xbox exclusive franchise will continue to exist regardless of what the Phil Spencer team says today. Previously, Microsoft bought Bethesda and a number of other studios, and their games, like Starfield and Redfallwill not be released on PlayStation, stated in the statement.
“Microsoft has decided to make several Bethesda games, including Starfield and Redfall, exclusive to its ecosystem, although it has previously assured European antitrust authorities that it has no incentive to stop selling games on competing consoles.
Microsoft has already shown by its actions that it can deny games to its competitors. We decided to try to prevent Microsoft from gaining control of a leading independent gaming company and using it to harm competitors in dynamic and fast growing gaming markets.“, – said Holly Vidova, head of the competition bureau of the US FTC.
Now supporters of the deal Microsoft and Activision Blizzard will have to testify in court with their arguments under oath. The mere fact of litigation does not mean that the deal will definitely fail, but the chances of this increase. Previously, it was through the court that NVIDIA’s attempt to buy Arm was blocked, although this story had much more critics. Against Microsoft today is only Sony.