The EU has announced that it plans to launch an in-depth investigation into Microsoft’s $69 billion purchase of Activision. According to a report, Microsoft had until midnight on 31 October to submit its revisions for the acquisition. These revisions would include commitments from the company in regard to the concerns surrounding the deal. However, Microsoft chose not to submit its commitments which resulted in the new advanced probe.
The European Commission has until 8 November to formally announce the advanced probe. This will act as the previously detailed “Phase 2” of the investigation into the deal. We previously reported that Phase 2 was brought on by concerns surrounding Microsoft’s impact on cloud streaming platforms specifically. The EU believes that Microsoft’s deal with Activision will hinder growth for other cloud gaming platforms on the market.
Microsoft says they are currently working with the European Commission regarding the next steps and what the company can do to address the marketplace concerns. The company recently claimed that it plans to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation as “long as a PlayStation existed out there”. However, this hasn’t been enough to sway the European Commission in favour of the purchase.
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While this advanced probe by the EU is a concern, it is not the only region that is currently reviewing the acquisition. The deal is still in review in the United States, Australia, New Zealand, Japan and South Korea. The only two regions that have approved the deal are Brazil and Saudi Arabia.