Microsoft has just filed a notice with the US Securities and Exchange Commission, announcing it has ” completed its previously announced acquisition of Activision Blizzard, Inc.” The closing of this deal is the final event in a journey for both companies that began in January 2022, when Microsoft first announced its intentions to acquire Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion. It is by far the biggest acquisition in Microsoft’s history.
Since then the deal has gone through a long period of regulatory approvals worldwide. In April 2023, the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority announced it would not approve the deal, stating it would give Microsoft too much control of the cloud gaming market. Microsoft offered the UK CMA a different plan which would give cloud gaming rights for all current and future Activision Blizzard games to Ubisoft for 15 years. A few hours ago, the CMA gave its final approval, which allowed Microsoft to close the deal.
In a statement on the Xbox Wire site, Microsoft head Phil Spencer stated:
For the millions of fans who love Activision, Blizzard, and King games, we want you to know that today is a good day to play. You are the heart and soul of these franchises, and we are honored to have you as part of our community. Whether you play on Xbox, PlayStation, Nintendo, PC or mobile, you are welcome here – and will remain welcome, even if Xbox isn’t where you play your favorite franchise. Because when everyone plays, we all win. We believe our news today will unlock a world of possibilities for more ways to play. Thank you for the ongoing support. We have so much more to come in the months ahead – I’m excited for the future and cannot wait to share it with you.
He added that Microsoft will also “start the work to bring beloved Activision, Blizzard, and King franchises to Game Pass and other platforms”, and added that the company will reveal “when you can expect to play in the coming months.”