Microsoft plans on closing its Activision Blizzard deal in the coming week. Tech conglomerate Microsoft is reportedly getting ready to close its much anticipated Activision Blizzard deal, with a decision from a regulator in the UK expected imminently.
Microsoft Closing Its Activision Blizzard Deal
Microsoft is at the moment planning to finalize its $68.7 billion proposed purchase of Activision Blizzard in the coming week. A source that is very much familiar with the plans of Microsoft reveals to The Verge that the company is now eyeing Friday, October 13th as the closing date when it gets to announce to the world that the 20-month process to purchase Call of Duty maker Activision Blizzard is over.
That date in question will still very much depend on the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority though, this is one regulator that blocked Microsoft’s deal in the early parts of this year. Microsoft just recently restructured the deal in question to transfer cloud gaming rights for both current and new Activision Blizzard games directly to Ubisoft, and the Xbox maker then secured preliminary approval from the CMA late in the previous month as a result.
The CMA’s Deadline
The CMA on the other hand has a deadline that reportedly expires today on gathering opinions over whether it is that it should grant consent to Microsoft to go ahead with the merger. A final decision from the CMA is however expected in the coming week, and barring any surprise last-minute changes should enable Microsoft to close its deal.
Both Microsoft and Activision extended their deal deadline to October 18th just recently, but if Microsoft is however able to close its deal in the coming week then it will reportedly bring to a close a 20-month process of regulatory approvals as well as battles across Europe and the US just a little earlier than expected.
The Reason the CMA Blocked the Deal in the UK
The CMA in the earlier parts of this year blocked the deal in the UK over cloud concerns and reasons, just weeks before the EU reportedly approved the deal with important cloud concessions from Microsoft. The regulatory battles in Europe as you should know came months after the FTC first sued to block the Activision Blizzard acquisition in the US in the previous year. The FTC on the other hand then failed to secure a preliminary injunction to block Microsoft from reportedly finalizing its Activision Blizzard acquisition, which is part of a grueling five days of evidence and testimony in July during the famed FTC v. Microsoft.
The FTC Still Appealing the Outcome of the Hearing with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals
The FTC as you should know is still appealing the outcome of that very hearing with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, and a decision in question on the matter is due in early December. The FTC on the other hand is also planning to resume its own administrative case against the proposed Activision Blizzard acquisition of Microsoft.
The administrative case as you should know will commence 21 days after the Ninth Circuit rules on the FTC’s appeal, with the hearing in question held virtually. The FTC as you should know could easily attempt to undo all of Microsoft’s Activision Blizzard deal, thus assuming that it closes on time, but it would however face an unprecedented uphill battle.
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