China is one of the countries asked to investigate the $68.7 billion deal between Microsoft and Activision Blizzard. But the country’s governing body refused to look into the matter.
China’s State Administration of Market Regulation (SAMR) may not open an investigation into Microsoft’s proposed acquisition of Activision Blizzard, according to Seeking Alpha.
Initially, the companies submitted to the regulator in April under a simplified procedure. However, SAMR denied the request and is now preparing to review the agreement under the usual procedure.
According to the report, the Chinese regulator first wants to examine the European Commission’s concerns about the merger. The Commission recently opened an in-depth investigation into concerns that Microsoft could make Activision Blizzard games exclusive to the Xbox ecosystem and harm competition in the games market.
As reported by the New York Times, the $68.7 billion deal must be approved by regulators in 16 countries, but only two countries, Brazil and Saudi Arabia, have agreed so far. now.
Microsoft is under scrutiny in the UK and US, where the Competition and Markets Authority and the Federal Trade Commission are currently conducting separate investigations. Despite concerns, both Activision Blizzard and Microsoft have said the deal will end in June 2023. Meanwhile, Microsoft still needs to receive approvals from more than 10 regulators globally to finalize. Activision Blizzard acquisition. The company is also currently trying to reach an agreement with PlayStation about the future of Call of Duty.
On November 11, Microsoft offered Sony a 10-year contract to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation, the company told the New York Times. However, Sony declined to comment on the matter. It’s not clear why the Japanese company turned down another offer from Xbox. But it’s safe to say that Sony will continue to oppose this $68.7 billion deal, citing its potential for harm to customers and market competition in general.
Microsoft President Brad Smith said: “If this deal had happened four years ago, this would hardly have been concerned. If one person can’t make something easy, we all make it simpler.”
On the other hand, Blizzard is facing similar difficulties in China, because the agreement with NetEase has expired. This will result in World of Warcraft, Overwatch, Diablo III and other games being discontinued in the country by early 2023. Blizzard will have to find a new partner, which can be difficult to do. amid growing pressure on the game industry in China.