The next installment of the Activision acquisition telenovela promises to be one of the hottest. From the Reuters news agency we learn that the date of the preliminary hearing for the lawsuit filed by the FTC against Microsoft to block the marriage with the publisher of COD.
The note issued by the press agency states that a judge has just set the date for the first preliminary hearing for the case brought by the Federal Trade Commission, and then by the Biden administrationagainst the Redmond tech giant to stop thedeal worth about 70 billion dollars created in early 2022 by Microsoft and Activision Blizzard.
According to the latest information shared by Reuters journalists, the hearing in question should be held on Tuesday 3 January 2023: during this event it will therefore be verified the validity or otherwise (for procedural purposes) of the allegations made by the FTC. Regardless of the number of preliminary hearings that will be celebrated, at the end of this phase the judge will be called to pronounce with a sentence of no place to proceed (as desired by Microsoft) or with a referral to trial.
In a few days, therefore, we will understand whether the legal battle threatened by the FTC to block the Activision-Microsoft deal is destined to continue or end in nothing. In any case, the antitrust experts who have intervened in recent months believe that the arguments put forward by the FTC to stop the marriage between Microsoft and Activision may not be sufficient to convince the judges, both because of the voluntary (and legally binding) concessions offered by Microsoft with the promise to bring Call of Duty to PlayStation and Nintendo for 10 years, both in function of the ‘non-monopolistic overlap’ of the activities carried out by Activision and by the Redmond house.
In this regard, we recall that in recent days the Chilean antitrust approved the Activision-Microsoft merger starting from Phase 1, deeming it not having found any danger to competition or monopoly risks deriving from the arrival in the Xbox family of series which, like that of Call of Duty, draw strength precisely from their multiplatform nature.