Microsoft's plan to buy Activision Blizzard for $69bn is facing regulatory scrutiny in the UK, Europe, and especially in the US, where the FTC is suing the company to stop the deal. However, Microsoft must also gain approval from authorities in all other countries. The latest to give the Activision Blizzard/Xbox merger a seal of approval is Chile's Fiscalía Nacional Económica (FNE).
On Thursday, Chile's regulator gave Microsoft an early New Year's celebration present by affirming the massive deal that will see Activision Blizzard become a part of the company.
EVP Corporate Affairs and CCO of Activision Blizzard, Lulu Cheng Meservey, says Chile now joins Brazil, Serbia, and Saudi Arabia in approving the buyout:
“Chile's competition authority, FNE, has now approved our acquisition by Microsoft, joining regulators elsewhere that have also recognized the deal's benefits for competition and players,” Meservey's tweet reads. “As other responsible regulators review the facts, we expect more approvals like this one.”
One of the main concerns of the CMA in the UK, FTC in the US, and European Commission in the EU is how Microsoft's acquisition will impact competition. Sony has also raised similar concerns, with most arguments centered on the availability of Call of Duty as a cross platform framchise in the future.
Sony admits Call of Duty is a game it cannot afford to lose. Microsoft insists it will keep the game series available on PlayStation, while also says Sony has done its fair share of anti-competitive actions in the past. Microsoft reached a 10-year license agreement to keep Call of Duty on Nintendo, while a similar offer is available for Sony.
It is worth noting that Activision is also home to Candy Crush, Warcraft, and other major gaming brands.
Chile's FNE says it looked specifically at the potential impact on competition and does not believe the deal will reduce competition. The authority states Activision already faces competition and that will continue whichever company owns the brands.
It also says that Microsoft keeping Activision games away from competing platforms doesn't make economic sense. This is an argument Microsoft has repeaetedly made since announcing the acquisition.
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