Microsoft could eventually get European Commission approval to acquire Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion. This is despite the UK regulator’s recent decision to block the deal.
- According to Reuters, EU antitrust regulators are expected to clear Microsoft’s bid to snap up Activision Blizzard on May 15.
- The main argument in favor of the record-breaking merger for the European Commission are licensing deals that Microsoft signed with its cloud gaming rivals. The list includes Nvidia’s GeForce Now, Boosteroid, and Ubitus.
- These agreements, which imply that all Xbox games (including Call of Duty in the future) will be released on the aforementioned services, are part of remedies for EU regulators proposed by Microsoft back in March.
- After that, the European Commission postponed its deadline for the final ruling to May 22.
The new Reuters report arrives just a few weeks after the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) blocked the Activision Blizzard deal. The regulator ruled that the acquisition will affect the cloud gaming market and give Microsoft an unfair advantage in the area.
So now the fate of the merger is in the hands of the European Commission. On top of that, Microsoft is also preparing for an evidentiary hearing in the US where Federal Trade Commission is trying to block the acquisition by suing the corporation.
Microsoft’s potential dominance in the cloud gaming market is now one of the biggest stumbling blocks to approving the deal. The CMA, for example, expects xCloud’s revenue to increase from under $50 million in 2021 to $450 million in 2026.