Microsoft argues Acti-Blizz buyout won’t stifle competition because its games are ‘nothing unique’


Microsoft is on some weird flex stuff right now, swinging a mighty purse stuffed with $68.7B right at Activision-Blizzard’s face while also saying the studio doesn’t make anything unique. That’s in reference to a statement made by Microsoft in a June report filed to New Zealand’s Commerce Commission, the regulatory body that’s among many others from various countries trying to make sure the deal doesn’t tamp down competition.

Microsoft reasons its buyout of ATVI will not choke out any competing games studios simply because the kinds of titles the studio makes are not distinct: “Specifically, with respect to Activision Blizzard video games, there is nothing unique about the video games developed and published by Activision Blizzard that is a ‘must have’ for rival PC and console video game distributors that could give rise to a foreclosure concern,” reads part of the report.

The report additionally argues that rival developers and publishers like Sony, Nintendo, NetEase, and Valve, along with their respective digital platforms, will still maintain their status as “significant global competitors,” thanks in part to a “fragmented market.” The company also reasons that smaller publishers won’t be affected by the deal since they have access to a wide variety of distribution tools. “For the reasons set out above, the Proposed Transaction is unlikely to substantially lessen competition in any market in New Zealand,” the report concludes.

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