Microsoft-Activision-Blizzard Discussion Thread |OT2| The NeverEnding Acquisition

Forget about Sony. If the EU is already ignoring them, CMA should(will see) do the same. Maybe on the FTC side we get Sony still bothering everyone, but It wont matter anyway.

Was ChatGPT and I think we can settle that CAT absolutely can over-turn the CMA and make its own decision on the merger

That being said, it isn’t something fast, it isn’t like MS would take it up with CAT and they’d overturn the decision next week…

I don’t believe it’ll come to this because given precedence the CMA will be pragmatic, but regardless MS can absolutely get this deal done even in the absolute worse case scenario if they want to and are willing to spend time and $$ in court…that being said this would very likely extend past the June closing date

Unlikely worst case scenario, but it can be done

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didnt khan say she wanted to stop all big tech deals just because. sounds political to me if true

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Shes out of money and lawyers. Probably not stopping much, even mergers that need to be stopped.

How many did she succeed in blocking based off politics though? Not a single one, The idea here from certain people is that the CMA in particular would block for reasons such as

“They’re out for blood”

“They want to stick it to big tech”

“They want to make a name for themselves”

To which I’ve asked, when has any regulator successfully blocked a merger based solely off of one of the above reasons? There isn’t one

Any merger that’s actually been blocked has been because of legitimate anti-trust reasons …there’s no example of a merger being blocked because of some ridiculous notion like the above reasons, because its never happened and it isn’t going to happen with this deal either

Because Lina Khan is on a power trip and the FTC is unhinged, people got the notion that there’s a world wide regulator vendetta against big tech and mergers and that they all want to kill deals for the sake of it rather than actual anti-trust concerns.

Scrutinizing deals is fine and even expected, if a $70B deal wasn’t scrutinized with a microscope then regulators wouldn’t be doing their jobs, but scrutinizing and

“no anti-trust concerns here but we’re going to block anyway lulz”

Aren’t the same thing and this has actually never happened


I was reading installbase forum and they agree with Foss that the CMA’s math error probably kills the SLC argument and even if the CMA veto’s this deal this error is absolutely a reason for an appeal to CAT.

But i think CMA will probably drop the SLC argument for console and focus on Cloud.


Just to be clear im not saying that they will try to stop it, just that if they wanted to they could probably come up with some BS

Obviously there is the CAT thing that MS can appeal to but it doesn’t sound as useful as regular court systems

The CMA looks at all mergers with a glass half empty mentality. If you look at their LinkedIn feed, most of their postings are about mergers which they think will harm the UK consumer, seldom any post where they say “we have allowed this merger to go through”.

I don’t think Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision will hurt the UK gamer or developer. Blocking the merger will hurt the UK gamer because it will just allow PlayStation to continue what they are doing.

I think the CMA will let it through because Microsoft would be the one organisation that could successfully point out any bad faith decisions and credibility of the CMA’s research.

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I agree that Sony are worried about a subscription based future. Playstation aren’t currently in a position to translate to a future where that is the market. The two or three first party high cost high sales games a year is doing well for them but if they have to pivot to a subscription service they would need more studios, they would probably have to cut development costs and they would need more dlc in their games and more successful multiplayer games that can be monetized. Not an easy transition


It’s almost as if the deal was never about the console market but taking on Apple and Google for that sweet mobile money.


There are two things to consider with CAT appeals…

ChatGPT could maybe answer the first about the standard of evidence required being that of ‘judicial review’ and what this would mean in practice.

The other being timescale. The average timescale from lodging an appeal to outcome is just over 12 months. It can go on for over 2 years.

The problem Microsoft have is there is little historical precedent for successfully overturning a CMA vertical merger case - and whilst they may feel there is a good chance - the time it will take would be considerable - I can’t see them closing in the meantime given the lack of historical precedent and risk involved - so it would be hugely difficult to manage another year or more of uncertainty and also would need to renegotiate the closing terms of the deal and no doubt in doing so ABK would come under considerable pressure.

We already have an answer from Brad Sams: Any block by regulators will be scrutinized according to the law.


Yes sure. But they aren’t going to say otherwise at this stage. Saying in public ‘we’ll not challenge you’ would be foolish.

The realities of what that would mean though in practice are a bit different. I’ve always felt Microsoft should do everything possible to avoid the need for a challenge here in the UK primarily because its just too expensive in terms of time and without any real precedent for success. They may well be constructing a case now - and indeed I believe they are but to use that to pressure the CMA NOW. Make them bleed now rather than necessarily dragging it all the way.

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With PS not wanting to sign a deal I wonder if they’ve considered not allowing new CoDs on PS at all. Sounds crazy right but if they do the following is possible,


  • Loose revenue (they already expect to if CoD goes to GP or PS+)


  • CoD gets a small player base
  • CoD looses relevance as not if PS
  • Less money from CoD sales
  • Better change a Sony 1st Party game (Socom) has to rival CoD (due to above)
  • Can say MS is mean and wanted to much money for CoD
  • Gaming media would praise Sony for some reason and hate Xbox Etc

Basically I can see PS not wanting CoD if the deal passes just to diminish it’s importance. It’s a massive risk but I could see them doing it.

It makes more sense to build a rival over a 10 year contract for sure, I can just see this happening. If Sony not having new CoD games weakens the franchise it COULD be the beginning of the end for CoD.

Playing tin fouler hat and devils advocate.

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Not wanting COD and actively preventing a rival from delivering a buy to play game and/or free to play game to your store are very different things. This would be investigated just like Apple vs Epic except it would be investigated against the EUs new digital laws. That would be a highly anti-consumer and anti-competition move.

Been over a year a still do not see any reason why this deal is harmful for consumers

Atleast for 10 years

And even after that, it will be not be different to what other platforms do now to gain market share

Whilst there really should be no way that this deal gets stopped, I still feel that CMA are going to try to protect Sony. Not because they are corrupt (in my opinion). I genuinely think they see PlayStation as a “force for good” in gaming and that protecting them IS protecting consumers.

Which is totally bonkers, but still…

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