Responding to the FTC’s lawsuit against Microsoft’s acquisition, Activision Blizzard said competitors had blinded the regulator.
In response to the Federal Trade Commission’s lawsuit, Activision Blizzard stated that the regulator was pursuing an “attempt to bypass the settled law” and believed that the arguments of its competitors like Sony has blinded them. Activision Blizzard strongly disagrees with Microsoft’s attempts to block acquisitions and has continued to escalate its antagonistic arguments against any party that might stop them.
Microsoft’s proposed $69 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard began facing its biggest challenge earlier this month when the FTC announced that it would sue to block the biggest deal in video game history. If it passes, Microsoft will take control of hugely successful IPs, including Call of Duty, World of Warcraft and Candy Crush. The FTC argues that the consolidation of these profitable brands has the potential to harm the industry and consumers, especially if the content produced then becomes a monopoly. Seemingly influenced by the concerns raised by Sony, the FTC stated that Microsoft would possess “thoughts and motives” to harm competition.
Activision Blizzard responded with a 35-page defense of the merger, in which the video game developer and publisher disapproved of those claims. Beginning with a brief reaffirmation that the deal would benefit various industry stakeholders, the company then immediately accused the FTC of ignoring “established law and decades of experience.” century tells us what is good for competition.” Activision alleges that “the theory of the FTC is based on the completely unfounded assumption that Microsoft will withhold or reduce other game platforms’ access to the Call of Duty game.”
The Call of Duty franchise has become a major reason for Sony to oppose the acquisition of Microsoft, who have voiced out the importance of hugely popular first-person shooter games to the PlayStation console. since September. Jim Ryan, President and CEO of Sony Interactive Entertainment, has repeatedly dismissed promises from Microsoft regarding keeping Call of Duty on PlayStation, describing the earlier proposals as ” inadequate on many levels”.
Despite Sony’s insistence, Activision Blizzard said “getting Call of Duty exclusives would be disastrous for Xbox”. Given how often Phil Spencer has signaled his intention to keep Call of Duty on other consoles, it would be disastrous if the franchise turned into an Xbox exclusive, from both a financial and reputational perspective. However, sources close to the FTC suggest political conspiracies within the regulator mean that rather than block the deal outright, it will seek to garner concessions from Microsoft to quell concerns. own and avoid possible consequences.