The Competition and Market Authority (CMA) has shot down the Microsoft-Activision acquisition deal priced at $68.7 billion, as per a press release.
The deal has been prevented over concerns that it would alter the future of the fast-growing cloud gaming market, leading to reduced innovation and less choice for UK gamers over the years to come.
Call of Duty, the popular shooter video game, has been developed by Activision.
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Here’s how events moulded
- InJanuary 2022, Microsoft had put forward the proposal for M&A of Activison Blizard, priced at $69 billion. Microsoft said that the deal will boost gaming business across mobile, PC, console, and cloud, and serve for metaverse projects. Microsoft also agreed to pay $95 in cash for each Activision share.
- Few days later, Sony asks Microsoft to make Call of Duty, along with all other Activision games, available for PlayStation series. Activision also assured that all the upcoming three games of Call of Duty will release for PlayStation.
- Next, US-regulator Federal Trade Commission (FTC) decided to probe the deal closely, as per media reports. It would investigate the impact of the deal on the gaming world across platforms and borders.
- In March, the FTC had asked for more documents to support their stand on Microsoft-Activision takeover deal.
- In April, Activision shareholders accepted the $68.7 billion acquisition deal from Microsoft.
- In July, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) regulator of UK raised concerns over the Microsoft-Activision M&A that it might hurt the cloud gaming, gaming consoles, competition against its rivals Sony and Nintendo.
- In September, EU antitrust regulators set the deadline for Microsoft-Activision decisionfor November 8.
- In November, the European Commission also went for an in-depth probe over the Microsoft’s Activision takeover deal.
- In December, the Biden administration filed a complaint on to block the deal.
- In February 2023, to abide by the concerns of the regulators, Microsoft offered the deal to make Call of Duty games available on Nintend and PlayStation for the next 10 years. In addition, Microsoft also offered Nvidia to make Xbox PC games available on its cloud gaming service for the next 10 years.
- EU regulators extended Microsoft’s buyout deal final decision to April 25.
- In March, UK dropped console gaming concerns over the deal. Microsoft also said that it will change cloud computing methods to abide by EU regulators.
- On April, the deal was eventually blocked by EU regulators after enough chaos.