UK CMA Requests Microsoft to Withdraw Call of Duty from Agreement to Purchase Activision Blizzard
On Thursday, the United Kingdom Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) announced in the document in which the list that conditions Microsoft would need to comply so that the purchase of Activision Blizzard was approved by the itish regulatory body.
The main one involves the departure of call of Duty from the deal, which would do the first person shooting franchise not under the control of Microsoft.
In practice, this would result in the need for the Call of Duty franchise to be sold to any other company or dismember Blizzard’s activity in the acquisition process.
While Activision has Call of Duty its main franchise, Blizzard has under its series umella such as Diablo, Overwatch, Warcraft and Star craft, more popular on PCs than on consoles.
In the document, UK Competition and Market Authority, it also mentions that the total purchase of Activision Blizzard by Microsoft could result in a substantial decrease in the competition. The CMA also points out that microsoft and activision Blizzard would have to fulfill at least one of three
conditions for the purchase of the publisher to be barred.
(1) Divestment of the business associated with Call of Duty; (2) Activision Blizzard Activision segment alienation, Inc. (The Activision segment), which would include the business associated with Call of Duty;
From Activision Blizzard segment, Inc., which would include the business associated with Call of Duty and World of Warcraft, among other titles, says the itish regulatory organ.
Still in the report, the CMA expressed concern about Microsoft’s dominance in the cloud game market, an area in which the US company already dominates, according to the agency, something between 60% and 70% of the sector.
The addition of franchises like Call of Duty exclusively in this market could change the future of games and harm UK players who owners of other consoles.
Despite the concerns expressed in the document, the CMA stressed that it is aware of attempts according to Microsoft has sought with Sony and Nintendo, especially regarding Call of Duty as a way to solve the imoglio related to the acquisition of Activision Blizzard.
Still, the regulatory agency recognizes that the purchase of Activision Blizzard could reduce competition between Sony and Microsoft, the two largest interested in Call of Duty.
Xbox and PlayStation compete closely with each other at the moment and access to important content, such as Cod, is a relevant part of this competition. Reducing this competition between Microsoft and Sony can make all players look higher, reduced range prices,, inferior quality and worst service on long-term game consoles.
At the end of the document, the CMA points out that Microsoft has until Feuary 22 to send answers related to the regulatory agency’s list of requests.
Answers on provisional conclusions of the case will be sent by March 1 and the agency’s final report should be published by April 26.