Microsoft tells judges its $69 bln Activision deal would benefit gamers

Reuters – Microsoft (MSFT.O) said Thursday that its $69 billion bid to buy ‘Call of Duty’ maker Activision Blizzard (ATVI.O) would benefit both gamers and gaming companies said to bring

Microsoft made this allegation in a filing meant to persuade a Federal Trade Commission judge to allow the transaction to proceed.

In its Dec. 8 complaint, the FTC said it was concerned that Activision’s popular games, such as “World of Warcraft” and “Diablo,” might no longer be available on devices that rival Microsoft’s Xbox. I was. A hearing with an Administrative Law Judge has been set for August 2023.

Microsoft president Brad Smith will sign a binding consent order with the FTC in mid-December to provide rival companies such as Sony (6758.T) with Call of Duty games for 10 years said he offered.

“A single game acquisition by the third-largest console maker cannot turn a competitive industry upside down, especially if the maker makes it clear that it will not withhold games,” Microsoft said in a Thursday filing. said in the document.

In a statement this week, Smith said he remains confident in the company’s litigation but is “committed to creative solutions with regulators.”

Activision CEO Bobby Kotick said in a statement Thursday that he believes the two companies will win their legal battle with the Trade Commission.

The Biden administration is taking a more proactive approach to antitrust law enforcement. The U.S. Department of Justice recently halted her $2.2 billion merger of Penguin Random House, the world’s largest book publisher, and her smaller U.S. rival Simon & Schuster.

The deal with Microsoft is also facing scrutiny outside the US, with the European Union saying it has until March 23, 2023 to decide whether to clear or block the deal.

Reporting by Diane Bartz and Paresh Dave. Edited by Muralikumar Anantharaman and Tom Hogue

Our standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

Paresh Dave

thomson Reuters

San Francisco Bay Area based tech reporter covering the rest of Google and Alphabet Inc. Los Angeles He told The Times that he joined Reuters in 2017 after focusing on the local tech industry for four years.

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