Microsoft President Brad Smith believes blocking Activision-Blizzard will make gaming “less competitive”: Microsoft’s efforts to close the deal on the Activision Blizzard purchase have ramped up in recent days. In the last several weeks, conflicting rumors have been widely disseminated; some predict the FTC “is likely” to sue over the purchase, while others suggest that internal divisions at the FTC might lead to a good decision for Microsoft.
Microsoft’s president, Brad Smith, has written an opinion article explaining why he believes this merger will be good for the gaming industry.
The @FTC blocking our acquisition of @ATVI_AB would make the gaming industry less competitive and gamers worse off. This deal is good for competition, consumers, and thousands of game developers. @Xbox https://t.co/HZpbkRd68o
— Brad Smith (@BradSmi) December 5, 2022
Further, Smith argues that“Microsoft faces huge challenges in the gaming industry. Our Xbox remains in third place in console gaming, stuck behind Sony’s dominant PlayStation and the Nintendo Switch. We have no meaningful presence in the mobile game industry. That segment of gaming generates the most revenue and is the fastest-growing, but a significant portion of the revenue goes to Google and Apple through their app-store fees.”
In addition, Smith addresses Sony’s criticisms by saying “Sony has emerged as the loudest objector. It’s as excited about this deal as Blockbuster was about the rise of Netflix. The main supposed potential anticompetitive risk Sony raises is that Microsoft would stop making “Call of Duty” available on the PlayStation. But that would be economically irrational.”
With the publication of this piece of commentary, it is becoming increasingly apparent that significant events concerning the Activision-Blizzard deal are on the horizon. Many governing bodies across the world, including the FTC, will decide in the coming months whether to approve the merger or take legal action.