Activision Blizzard: The US body must determine whether or not the purchase by Microsoft harms free competition. Microsoft’s purchase of Activision Blizzard is pending approval. According to Bloomberg, which alludes to sources familiar with the matter, the body that will be in charge of reviewing the operation will be the Federal Trade Commission. This media outlet recalls that the agency has promised a more aggressive surveillance of this type of agreement.
The FTC will be in charge of supervising the investigation that will determine if the acquisition compromises in any way the normal functioning of the market. It will do so instead of the Department of Justice, as explained by the person who has leaked the information, who is not authorized to speak publicly about the process. The two bodies share responsibility for mergers and acquisitions, so they often reach agreements on which of them is responsible for investigating the deals.
FTC chief wants to toughen antitrust oversight
Neither Microsoft nor the Federal Trade Commission have responded to Bloomberg’s questions. For some time now, Lina Khan, the head of the FTC, has advocated a more comprehensive approach to reviewing big deals, especially among the most powerful tech companies, which have expanded their influence around the world. Important operations have been blocked during Khan’s tenure: Nvidia tried to buy Arm and Lockheed Martin Corp closed a deal to buy Aerojet Rocketdyne Holding, but both operations failed to materialize.
If the deal is approved, Microsoft will acquire Activision Blizzard and all studios for about $70 billion. In recent months, the company led by Bobby Kotick has been immersed in controversy due to accusations of sexual and workplace harassment, which have reached the front page due to the complaint from the state of California. Also to working conditions in companies like Raven, where there have been layoffs.
Sony Interactive Entertainment has also made a move and bought Bungie, but they promise more purchases in the future.