As we continue along in 2023, it looks increasingly unlikely that Xbox will be able to close the deal to acquire Activision Blizzard by the spring season as it had hoped. Multiple authorities have been heavily scrutinizing the deal, with the European Union having a hearing with Microsoft, the UK Competition and Markets Authority probing the deal, and the US Federal Trade Commission filing a lawsuit to block it. However, Xbox lead Phil Spencer doesn’t believe the deal would irreparably damage Xbox if it fails. The head of Xbox gave assurance that Xbox will move forward even if the Activison Blizzard acquisition falls through.
Spencer shared these claims and thoughts in a recent conversation with The Times. It was there that he shared the efforts everyone at Xbox, including himself, have made to get the deal through, including speaking personally with Sony chief executive Kenichiro Yoshida to assure PlayStation that Xbox would not be stealing availability of Call of Duty away through the deal. However, he also shared that the future of Xbox isn’t grim if the deal falls through.
“This is an important acquisition for us. It’s not some linchpin to the long term — Xbox will exist if this deal doesn’t go through,” Spencer said.
Spencer also shared concerns about the manner in which authorities are stepping in on the matter, claiming it hurts competition and makes those in direct competition (Xbox, PlayStation, and Nintendo in this case) weaker as a result.
Spencer also went on to say that he feels there’s a lack of knowledge for regulators that makes the matter difficult, but it’s a difficulty he’s willing to assist with where he can.
With the European Union, Federal Trade Commission, and Competition and Markets Authority still breaking down its neck on the Activision Blizzard acquisition, it still remains to be seen if Xbox will close the deal. Stay tuned as we continue to follow this story for further updates and news.