FTC and Microsoft confirm a lack of ‘substantive’ settlement talks as UK regulatory body extends its investigation


There have been a couple of small but no less important steps in the continuing story of Microsoft’s buyout of Activision-Blizzard. We begin with some news out of the pre-trial hearing from earlier this week, which confirmed that the Federal Trade Commission and Microsoft have not had any “substantive” settlement talks between the two parties.

The hearing itself has had no other major pieces of information and the case itself is set to be heard by Judge Michael Chappell sometime in August of this year; readers will note this effectively puts the brakes on the deal’s previously anticipated closure by this June.

The other headline for this story is related to the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority, which has been putting the buyout under a microscope since this past September. The CMA has now extended the timetable for this investigation, stating that it will publish its findings in April of this year instead of March as originally intended.

This extension is being required because of the complexity of the case and in order to process the “large volume of evidence, as well as main party and third party submissions.” Previously the CMA had asked the public for evidence and opinions about the deal, finding that 75% of public comments were in favor of the transaction going through.

Activision-Blizzard is considered a controversial gaming company owing to a long string of scandals over the last few years, including the Blitzchung boycott, mass layoffs, labor disputes, and executive pay fiasco. In 2021, the company was sued by California for fostering a work environment rife with sexual harassment and discrimination, the disastrous corporate response to which compounded Blizzard’s ongoing pipeline issues and the widespread perception that its online games are in decline. Multiple state and federal agencies are investigating the company as employees unionize and call for Bobby Kotick’s resignation. As of 2023, the company is being acquired by no less than Microsoft.
Previous articleBlade & Soul revises Demonsbane score transition and rewards following player disgruntlement
Next articleLeaderboard: What was the best *new* MMO of 2022?

No posts to display