Satya Nadella, chief executive officer of Microsoft, has said his company will still be number three in the games industry even after the Activision Blizzard acquisition is completed should the US Federal Trade Commission give the green light to the deal.
Nadella made his comments during an interview with the Financial Times, where he was questioned about the deal being investigated by regulators to determine whether it hurts competition. While acknowledging that the acquisition will be under a microscope, Nadella seems confident it will go ahead due to Xbox’s third position in the gaming industry.
Sony vs Microsoft: Is Activision Blizzard Deal Anticompetitive?
It will be a while before the FTC makes a decision, but for now Microsoft appears to be free. At least that’s what analysts and Nadella think. “Ultimately, all the analysis here has to be done through a lens of, ‘what’s the category we’re talking about and the market structure?'” Nadella told the Financial Times. “Even after this acquisition, we will be number three with some kind of low teen share [of the video games market]. We will be a bit of a player in what will be a very fragmented place.”
Microsoft insists the Activision Blizzard acquisition is related to metaverse development as opposed to taking games off rival platforms. However, Nadella has a different tone than Xbox CEO Phil Spencer, who immediately assured Sony that he wants to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation. Nadella believes that given Microsoft’s position in the market, Microsoft does not need to make “formal concessions” to get the acquisition approved.
Opinion: The Xbox Activision Acquisition Cannot Be Stopped
Zamena writes… As I said before, the Xbox Activision deal will annoy the authorities, but they’re unlikely to succeed in blocking the takeover. For starters, Microsoft has done its homework and Nadella is right in saying that Microsoft’s third place in the games market makes the case for this deal even more compelling. Second, Microsoft knows that if this deal is considered anticompetitive, FTC will have to apply the same rules to the entire tech industry, which it probably won’t. Only time will tell what will happen in 2023.
In other news, Naughty Dog has confirmed it has three projects in development, and god drop studio Counterplay is working on a new IP.
[Source: Financial Times]