EU likely to approve Microsoft acquisition of Activision Blizzard

Following licensing agreements made to satisfy antitrust concerns, Microsoft may get the pass from the EU to finalize its acquisition of Activision Blizzard.


Microsoft is still meeting all opposition in formal hearings and making plays to ensure that its $68.7 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard goes through, but it may be passing one of its major hurdles soon. After making several concessions and deals to ensure major Activision Blizzard IP will remain available to multiple platforms outside Xbox, sources have suggested that the European Union may move forward with approval for Microsoft’s Activision Blizzard deal.

Word of the EU’s supposedly impending approval for the Microsoft and Activision Blizzard deal came through Reuters, who claimed to have heard the confirmation from multiple anonymous sources familiar with the matter. Microsoft had gone to speak before the EU in a hearing under which representatives from PlayStation were also involved. However, leading up to the hearing, Microsoft had also made several licensing agreements to assuage antitrust concerns regarding the deal. This included a deal to bring Xbox PC games to Nvidia’s GeForce Now program, as well as an agreement to release Call of Duty games on the Nintendo Switch.

Call of Duty screenshot
Microsoft is said to have addressed EU antitrust concerns by making concessions to ensure that large franchises like Call of Duty would remain playable to multiple platforms on launch.
Source: Activision Blizzard

This seems to have been enough to appease and settle about Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard and it seems all that’s left now is for the EU to formally approve the deal. Even so, Microsoft still has a couple obstacles left to clear as it aims to close the Activision Blizzard deal this spring 2023. The UK’s Competition and Markets Authority still has qualms about the merger, much to the chagrin of Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick. Also, Microsoft is still facing a lawsuit from the Federal Trade Commission that must be settled before the deal has a chance of approval in the United States.

Nonetheless, approval from the EU on the Microsoft and Activision Blizzard merger would be one less obstacle to overcome on their way to settling the deal. Stay tuned as we continue to follow for further updates as they become available.

Senior News Editor

TJ Denzer is a player and writer with a passion for games that has dominated a lifetime. He found his way to the Shacknews roster in late 2019 and has worked his way to Senior News Editor since. Between news coverage, he also aides notably in livestream projects like the indie game-focused Indie-licious, the Shacknews Stimulus Games, and the Shacknews Dump. You can reach him at and also find him on Twitter @JohnnyChugs.

From The Chatty
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    March 2, 2023 11:20 AM

    TJ Denzer posted a new article, EU likely to approve Microsoft acquisition of Activision Blizzard

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      March 2, 2023 3:10 PM

      Dr_cube is in shambles

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      March 2, 2023 3:16 PM


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      March 2, 2023 3:24 PM

      Anyone else deep in atvi stock , imma be ruined if this deal doesn’t go through

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        March 2, 2023 3:26 PM


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        March 2, 2023 10:28 PM

        I’m wondering why it still isn’t near $95

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          March 2, 2023 11:21 PM

          thats the doubt market is pricing in. but i agree it should be more like 85 with how likely this buyout happens

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      March 2, 2023 5:15 PM

      The members weighed all the pros and cons. Then someone mentioned, "Diablo 4 on Gamepass".

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      March 3, 2023 2:03 AM

      I kinda want this to happen because I suspect MS will take much better care of properties like starcraft.

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      March 3, 2023 3:25 AM

      this felt like an eventuality. MS has been saying and doing all the right things to assuage concerns, and everyone seems comfortable with it except sony - who i think we can all agree might be even more full of shit than MS.

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      March 3, 2023 3:38 AM

      Such consolidation is never good for the consumer.

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        March 3, 2023 4:15 AM

        Monopolies are always bad for the consumer and consolidation can sometimes be bad. But I think Activision is being run so badly right now that it will be a positive, MS taking over Bethesda has already been a positive with games like Redfall and Starfield being given more time, something you wouldn't have seen under the old Bethesda.

        Industry is still big enough that there will still be plenty of large and small publishers after this deal go's through, and no where near a monopoly.

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