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EU opens in-depth investigation into Microsoft's planned $69B acquisition of Activision (update)

Nov. 08, 2022 12:27 PM ETActivision Blizzard, Inc. (ATVI), MSFTTTWOBy: Chris Ciaccia, SA News Editor39 Comments

Day 1 - Mobile World Congress 2022

David Ramos

The European Commission said on Tuesday it was opening an in-depth investigation into Microsoft's (NASDAQ:MSFT) planned $69B acquisition of Activision Blizzard (NASDAQ:ATVI) on fears that the deal may "significantly reduce competition."

In a statement, the Commission said

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Comments (39)

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It's awesome that everyone knows that this is all about as many "commissions" getting their palms greased as possible... The deal will go through, its just a matter of how many corrupt hands need to be paid...
Scotts Miracle-Gro Sucks profile picture
A regulator from the EU regulatory department tweeted this morning that he won’t let MSFT take away his access to COD on PlayStation. The corruption inside all government agencies has no limits now a days. What a broken world we have become.
Martin Keck profile picture
@DonroldDrumpf access to old games would be a low hurdle for the merger.
Well, we can all take solace in knowing that the EU always sees issues with every company that successfully grows its business in the face of deeply embedded anti-capitalist bias. EU hates the thought of an American company that shows these bureaucrats how to run a business that actually helps the population work in Europe.

Initiating a complete fiasco about MSFT's acquisition because the bureaucrats have nothing else to do after breakfast. Have faith though, after six months of chasing their tails, they'll give up and say that Microsoft conduct won't change western civilization and approve the transaction.

No wonder England is broke while Germany and France are whining to Yellen to tell Powell to quit fighting inflation that is bankrupting the aforementioned.
@combatcorpsmanVN do you recall the Vogans from Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy? In some way the EU is similar. Bureaucracy is what the EU excels at and you must let them complete their paperwork, have lots of meetings and arguments, approve the application with the correct rubber stamp and then file it in the right folder; otherwise their brains will explode. In the meantime Microsoft’s lawyers will just have to sit in a waiting room and drink coffee.
bluescorpion0 profile picture
@TheHarlequin you know very little of Europe. I have had far less red tape in europe than in USA or Canada.
@scorpionblue I ran a European private equity fund so I guess I don’t know anything about European bureaucracy and red tape
lol I told you guys. This is not going through. See my comment history for why. Short acti
Harm Hoeksema profile picture
@Julian Beatty I found the comment I think. But first, you're one cynical guy. And you're still young and in university? The work place will not be kind to you.
Are you postive on any company at all?

Comment on merger:
Unbelievable people actually think this is going to close.
Is it an absolute monopoly? No. Is it monopolistic? Every single one of these ‘experts’ failed their history 101 courses. Hard.
Seriously. I have the retort none of these laughable “but it’s fine” arguments can counter.
Standard. Freaking. Oil.
Standard Oil was, without question, a monopoly. Which was built on - you guessed it kiddos - vertical integration. They started with oil, because, duh. Oil. They then bought up smaller, competing refineries - but not nearly all of them, or even their largest competitors. They just bought good, productive companies.
Then they bought or developed companies to package, commoditize, market, and sell the oil. And as these companies grew to control the market, they simply stopped refusing to sell anyone else’s products. And Standard Oil refused to sell the raw materials to anyone but these vertical integrations.
Transporting the oil from the well to the loading station, that was a problem. One they didn’t want to pay someone else to handle, because there was money to be made. So they started building pipelines. Pipelines aren’t oil drilling or selling! Yep, vertical integration.
Harm Hoeksema profile picture
@Harm Hoeksema so there were more arguments on windows OS and such.

The big argument you're not seeing is: Steam
Which controls 90%+ market share of pc gaming I think - so you're whole argument is irrelevant. Software is luckily still independent of OS. Also, games can easily be created and distributed which you can see in recent Indie game successes.
bluescorpion0 profile picture
@Julian Beatty it is expensive to take a view. either way. the best course of action when you are "sure" about something is to avoid it, not short or long it. I am always paranoid to be sure of anything.
I looked at all of Msft and actin’s peers. None are European. So what’s the problem?
Hallvar Sande profile picture
@johnxgxholgate They only want money in exchange for their power. I'm European, it's their fucking socialist job.
bluescorpion0 profile picture
guys relax. they're no worse than the FTC. also they got a real war going so maybe call of duty isnt so important?
In the first 60 days, EU staff will be looking in depth at the issues surrounding video game monopolies, including extensive playing of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II, to get to the bottom of it all
anil92691 profile picture
What is SEC’s excuse for not giving the go ahead?
National Security?
No donations to Democracy?
EU is just a bunch of bureaucrats. They sit and do investigation. EU economy is pretty much gone socialist, very little innovation is coming out of that economy. People have been reduced to become dependent on government scraps, which constantly diminishes in the name of global good nonsense such as "Global Warming", guilting "gluttony", and needless war with Russia.

In America woke mob almost beat the population to subscribe to EU nonsense. Hope today's election soundly rejects the centralized model of governing, usurp of power with cockamamie ideas.
Cold winter in Europe. They need to divert electricity use from gaming to space heaters.
@tranche1 actually it's been super warm and gas prices are tumbling.
anil92691 profile picture
They will tumble totally by January 15 when gas will no longer be available for use. Total solar heating. Feel for the animals who will warm people.

Ukraine War; a green climate success.
Scotts Miracle-Gro Sucks profile picture
Eu just copy and pasted what Sony provided them along with a big check
Sony is the only company complaining.
08 Nov. 2022
No surprise. Excessive government regulation is the only way Europe can stay economically relevant.
SuperPac profile picture
EU, with its bloated bureaucracy in Brussels, has all the bug-swatting wastrels to ''open in-depth investigation'' into everything as their own inflation, currency, energy and food situation grows grim with each passing week. This is quite the ''Theatre of the Absurd''.
MoneyPig profile picture
The EU needs to throw the USA under the bus and expose how Bill Gates supports political propoganda via MSNBC to get favors from regulators who answer to politicians.

The fact that Buffet keeps buying ATVI says a lot about the relationship between poltical corruption and the news media.
@MoneyPig great LSD in your neck of the woods…..
@MoneyPig your tin hat is getting a bit tight. Time for a bigger one.
Born'nRaised profile picture
The EU looking for its lb. of flesh...how pathetic are politicians...
Just incredible.

You’d think the entire EU would be laser focused, all hands on deck, toward achieving solutions for its imminent energy catastrophe.

But no. They’re focused on VIDEO GAMES, what they grotesquely term “competition,” and blatant extortion.
Martin Keck profile picture
@Nescience the EU has specialized personnel. The competition watchdogs are not experts for the world market prices of natural gas or oil. I would be surprised if the commission heads were micro managing video games markets, because there are larger problems - like you said.
@Nescience Maybe those regulators should be out in the woods cutting firewood and picking up sticks.
aka "Shakedown"
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