It would appear that the UK is looking to extend time to spend with Microsoft in renegotiation on the $68.7 billion USD Activision Blizzard Deal. The Competition and Markets Authority just announced an extension on the deadline of a final decision in the Microsoft case to August. A final decision was originally supposed to be handed down on July 18, 2023.
The CMA announced its deadline extension in a filing on its website on July 14, 2023. With the filing, the CMA asks the deadline for its final decision to be pushed from July 18 back to August 29, 2023, claiming that the current schedule isn’t sufficient enough for it to come to a reasonable decision on the matter:
With the moving of the date, Microsoft and the CMA will likely find themselves in further hearings and negotiations to talk about what it will take for Microsoft to assuage antitrust concerns in the UK. Originally, the CMA had blocked the Microsoft and Activision Blizzard deal, claiming that Microsoft had too much control over the cloud gaming market and that the merger would only deepen that issue. With Microsoft’s victory over the FTC (which currently plans to appeal to further contend the deal), the UK’s CMA is one of the few remaining obstacles to the Activision Blizzard deal closing.
We expect we will see further concessions over the next few weeks leading up to the August 2023 decision by the CMA. Stay tuned for the latest updates on the Microsoft and Activision Blizzard deal.