Microsoft may suffer third block in acquisition of Activision Blizzard

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South Korea approves Microsoft's acquisition of Activision without restrictions
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Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard could see its third blockade. Last Tuesday (20), New Zealand’s regulatory body expressed concerns about the deal valued at US$ 69 million (~R$ 345 million).

Since April, Microsoft’s business has faced obstacles in the United Kingdom and the United States, which believe that competition will be severely hampered by possible exclusivity of heavyweight titles like Call of Duty, in addition to the consequences in the cloud gaming market.

A few days ago, the US Federal Trade Commission filed an injunction to block Microsoft from finalizing the deal with Activision. A judge in the United States accepted the request and temporarily blocked the purchase.

Now, the New Zealand Commerce Commission could be the next authority to block the takeover. In its preliminary report, the regulator expressed several concerns about the deal. He says he is investigating whether Microsoft’s purchase of Activision Blizzard will have a material impact on the cloud gaming market due to its “vertical effects”.

This mention of verticality refers to the consolidations of the supply chain. In cloud gaming, the deal is considered a vertical merger because Microsoft operates the Xbox Cloud Gaming service that can benefit from Activision Blizzard content.

Playback: Microsoft.

In short, the New Zealand Trade Commission wants to look into whether acquiring Activision Blizzard would give Xbox too much power in the nascent cloud gaming market. It is worth remembering that this argument is very similar to that used by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) in the United Kingdom.

Despite the obstacles, the agreement between Microsoft and Activision Blizzard will be difficult to cancel, mainly because it is approved in several countries such as the European Union, China, South Korea, Japan and even Europe.

The New Zealand Trade Commission has even July 17th to reveal whether it will side with the countries approving the acquisition or whether it will be responsible for the third block in Microsoft’s business.

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Abraham
Expert tech and gaming writer, blending computer science expertise