The United States antitrust agency Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has filed an injunction with a federal court to temporarily halt Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard, valued at $69 billion. This is the new movement in this long process that has been resolved in the rest of the countries except the United Kingdom.
FTC to file injunction seeking to block Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard https://t.co/ojA8cgVVIV CNBC (@CNBC) June 12, 2023
The FTC had already filed a lawsuit last December in which the suppression of competition in the video game industry was mentioned. The hearing in that case, which will be deliberated by the FTC’s own internal administrative law judge, is set for August 2, after Microsoft’s July 18 merger deadline expires.
As reported by CNBC by sources briefed on the matter, the FTC is now taking steps to prevent Microsoft’s Activision Blizzard settlement from going through before its internal hearing by filing an injunction with a United States District Court. . This dgive the Federal Trade Commission the additional time it needs to make a decision on whether to block the acquisitionwhich can then be appealed by Microsoft in federal court if it is not satisfied with the result – something that it probably will do because they continue to show their interest in closing the purchase.
Microsoft believes this will speed up the case
Brad Smith, president of Microsoft, has commented on the news and considers that it is something positive because “should speed up the decision process. This benefits everyone. We always prefer constructive and government-friendly paths, but we are confident in our case and look forward to presenting it.”
In the United Kingdom the CMA blocked the agreement in April, mainly because of its cloud gaming concerns and the impact on competition that it could have. “We remain committed to this acquisition and will appeal the CMA’s decision which rejects a pragmatic way to address competition concerns and discourages investment and technological innovation in the UK,” Smith told the CMA statement.