According to sources, the European Union could approve Microsoft’s planned acquisition of Activision Blizzard as early as next week. When Microsoft revealed plans to add Activision Blizzard to its enormous collection of Xbox-affiliated publishers last year, it sent shockwaves throughout the gaming industry, but not everyone was on board. Sony has expressed anxiety about losing access to the extremely valuable Call of Duty franchise, while others are concerned that Microsoft will have an unfair monopoly on the market if the purchase is completed.
Last month, the United Kingdom’s Competition and Markets Authority decided to ban Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard because it would harm competition in the rapidly growing cloud gaming business. This decision could delay the acquisition for ten years, but Microsoft has vowed to fight the CMA’s decision at the UK’s Competition Fight Tribunal. Meanwhile, the European Union has been conducting its inquiry against the Activision Blizzard acquisition for several months and may be nearing a conclusion shortly.
According to a fresh Reuters report, the EU might rule on Microsoft’s Activision Blizzard acquisition as soon as next week.
Insiders close to the situation believe that May 15, eight days before the current provisional deadline of May 22, is the most likely date for the EU to accept the deal. According to reports, the antitrust agency would support the purchase after Microsoft agreed to license relationships with various cloud streaming providers to alleviate concerns about the company obtaining a monopoly in this industry.
Despite the CMA’s latest rejection, Microsoft’s proposed acquisition has received widespread backing from other gaming firms and regulatory authorities. Both Nintendo and Nvidia have established agreements with Microsoft to bring Call of Duty on their respective platforms if the deal is approved, and countries such as China and Japan have given their blessing. Meanwhile, the US Federal Trade Commission is attempting to halt the takeover, while Microsoft is presently considering forward with the transaction without the firm’s approval.