Microsoft Chairman Brad Smith believes the Redmond company has worked “very hard” to address concerns raised by some of its rivals over the Activision Blizzard takeover and it is now up to regulators, especially in the UK, to determine if the way is clear.
“We work hard to address the concerns that some of our competitors have raised, but I think there is a way. It will be up to the regulators, especially now in the UK, to decide if that way is clear,” Smith said in an interview with the CNBC network.
Last week, Microsoft and Activision submitted a new merger deal for UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) approval, after the UK regulator determined that the original deal, Valued at about 69,000 million dollars (69,354 million euros), it would be blocked to protect innovation and options in cloud games.
In this way, the new restructured agreement proposed by the companies will be subjected to a new investigation by the UK regulator, which will be carried out in accordance with the usual processes and whose legal deadline to make a decision will be October 18. of 2023.
“As the CMA of the United Kingdom has said, there is no green light, but they will review our proposal. And I am hopeful that by mid-October we will be able to do it,” says the president of Microsoft, for whom now “we must let the regulators speak for themselves.”
“In my view, what we’ve really tried to do is take these concerns seriously. We haven’t tried to dismiss them. We haven’t tried to downplay them. We’ve worked to address them, and by addressing them, we’ve crafted a transaction that will promote competition and at the same time At the same time it will eliminate the concerns that some people had”, he has defended.
Under the restructured deal proposed last week, Microsoft will no longer acquire cloud rights for existing Activision games on PC and console, or new games released by Activision for the next 15 years (this excludes the European Economic Area). .
Instead, these rights will be sold to French company Ubisoft Entertainment ahead of Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision.
In this way, Ubisoft will be able to license Activision’s content under different business models, including subscription services, in addition to giving the French company the ability to require Microsoft to offer versions of games on operating systems other than Windows.
On July 19, Microsoft and Activision Blizzard agreed to extend until October 18 the deadline for the closing of the purchase by the Redmond giant of the studio responsible for video games such as the ‘Call of Duty’ saga.
The transaction, agreed at around 69,000 million dollars in January 2022, had initially set a closing date of July 18, 2023.