Microsoft is considering adjusting Activision takeover for British regulator

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Microsoft is examining whether the acquisition of Activision Blizzard ‘can be adjusted’ to meet the concerns of the British regulator CMA. In order to give this process ‘full attention’, Microsoft wants to pause the requested appeal against the CMA.

“While we ultimately disagree with the Competition and Markets Authority’s concerns, we are considering how the deal could be amended to address these concerns,” says Microsoft’s president Brad Smith. The company had appealed the CMA’s decision to block the takeover. This appeal is through the Competition Appeal Tribunal; Following the new discussions with CMA, Microsoft has asked CAT to pause this appeal for the time being. CAT still has to agree to this pause.

The CMA says to The Verge willing to look at Microsoft’s proposals to amend the deal. It is not clear how Microsoft would like to adjust the deal. The United Kingdom blocked the deal in April over concerns that the acquisition could disrupt competition in the cloud gaming market. Microsoft proposed measures to alleviate these concerns, but these did not go far enough or required permanent regulation from CMA on Microsoft. The supervisor did not want this.

In addition to the CMA, only the American regulator FTC is still blocking the takeover. The Federal Trade Commission wanted this takeover to be temporarily blocked, but the judge did not agree, it became apparent earlier on Tuesday. Microsoft could in principle complete the acquisition of Activision Blizzard from July 15. The FTC could still appeal and there is still a separate case by the regulator to block the takeover. The supervisor says to The Verge to announce next steps ‘in the coming days’.

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