Microsoft seems to be in the last stages of acquiring Activision Blizzard. There have been some ups and downs in the whole procurement process. On one hand, it’s because the world’s governments are waiting to approve the acquisition. On the other hand, it’s due to Sony claiming anti-competitive behavior on Microsoft’s part. But still, there’s great news. Microsoft is proceeding successfully in the Activision Blizzard acquisition deal.
It was recently that Saudi Arabia approved the acquisition. The General Authority of Competition gave Microsoft a heads up. The company was allowed to proceed with the acquisition in Saudi Arabia.
Phil Spencer Shares Great News About Microsoft Activision Blizzard Acquisition Deal
So far, Phil Spencer, the chief executive officer of Xbox, is happy with how things have been going. He states that he’s encouraged by the current rate of progress in the acquisition. There have been positive discussions with regulators about completing the deal and the gaming giant is about to close its $70 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard Inc.
I feel good about the progress that we’ve been making, but I go into the process supportive of people who maybe aren’t as close to the gaming industry asking good, hard questions about ‘what is our intent? What does this mean? If you play it out over five years, is this constricting a market? Is it growing a market?
Phil Spencer says that he feels really good but has been facing some difficult questions outside of the gaming industry. Some people ask why Microsoft wants the Activision Blizzard deal and the company under their wing. Is the company trying to narrow down a market? Will this deal grow the gaming market?
I’ve never done a 70 billion-dollar deal, so I don’t know what my confidence means. I will say the discussions we’ve been having seem positive.
This is the first time that Xbox has engaged in a deal of this stature. Phil Spencer is understandably nervous about it but he’s glad that the discussions have been largely positive so far. If Microsoft’s deal with Activision Blizzard goes through, the company will not only inherit Candy Crush and Call of Duty, but things will get a whole lot more complicated from then on.
They’ll also have to be responsible for Activision’s history of allegations. Whether it be the underpaying of female employees or dealing with sexual harassment accusations, Microsoft will have to handle everything. Activision had been brushing these problems under the rug for years now, only for them to explode onto the scene in the past few years.
Microsoft aims to tackle these problems effectively and efficiently. Recently, Activision itself claimed that it was trying to deal with the ongoing issues. The company promises to get its act together before the agreement is done before January.
I believe they’re committed to that.
When I look at the work that they’re doing now — there’s always more that can be done — but I believe from the studio leaders there that I know very well, some of them former Xbox members, that they’re committed to this journey. And I applaud that regardless of the deal. – Phil Spencer talking about Activision Blizzard.
Some of the employees have said enough is enough and formed labor unions. Microsoft stated back in June that it will work hard to solve the issues that these unions have brought up in order to close the matter gracefully. Phil Spencer stated that this was the first time in his career dealing with such a problem:
I’ve never run an organization that has unions in it, but what I can say in working through this is we recognize workers’ needs to feel safe and heard and compensated fairly in order to do great work. We definitely see a need to support the workers in the outcomes that they want to have.
Microsoft To End Exclusives In The Future?
Phil Spencer had some pretty interesting things to say about platform exclusivity. He informed Bloomberg that he wishes to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation consoles going forward, despite Xbox acquiring the creators. The idea of games being exclusively available on one platform will soon be a thing of the past, according to him.
He went ahead and used an analogy for this, saying what if the interviewer and his kid had different consoles and couldn’t play the same game? That would be a huge letdown just because some multi-billion dollars corporations refused to play along. He wants to normalize cross-platform gameplay for future titles across Xbox and PlayStation.
This will allow everyone to enjoy games together, even if they own different pieces of plastic. Overall, this would be more profitable for the industry in the future.
While some members of the industry don’t see eye to eye with Phil on this matter or the Activision acquisition at large, this move could prove fruitful in the long run. If the industry moves past its differences of exclusivity, then there’s hope for the gaming industry to thrive beyond the confinement of contemporary models.
Maybe you happen in your household to buy an Xbox and I buy a PlayStation and our kids want to play together and they can’t because we bought the wrong piece of plastic to plug into our television.
We really love to be able to bring more players in reducing friction, making people feel safe, secure when they’re playing, allowing them to find their friends, play with their friends, regardless of what device — I think in the long run that is good for this industry. And maybe in the short run, there’s some people in some companies that don’t love it. But I think as we get over the hump and see where this industry can continue to grow, it proves out to be true.”
Microsoft Wants More Acquisitions
Despite being busy with the Activision Blizzard deal, Spencer states that he’s still seeking more content. He’s aiming to acquire more companies and studios for Xbox Game Pass and is on the lookout for more deals and partnerships in the future. For the CEO of Xbox, there’s always an even bigger next thing on mind.
I’m always thinking about things that add to our capability,” he said. “Even though we’ve worked on our geographic expansion, I’d still say we have too many of our creators in places that are our traditional markets.
Phil Spencer seems to be quite emphatic towards the whole scenario. Despite Sony‘s alleged antics of trying to sabotage the company and the Activision Blizzard acquisition deal (Sony allegedly bribed studios to not include their games in Xbox Game Pass), he wants what’s best for the gaming community.
He wants to create a non-exclusive gaming industry and it seems that the industry, too, is slowly adopting that route. Phil is hopeful for the Microsoft Activision Blizzard acquisition deal. It’s almost wrapped up, and it might finally come to a close before the end of the year.
And that’s pretty much it for the updated news on the Microsoft Activision Blizzard acquisition deal. Do you think the acquisition might stop due to a disagreement among the regulatory authorities? Are you excited about this deal? Will things go as smoothly as planned or will it never come to completion? For now, the final decision lies in the hands of regulatory bodies and only time will tell if the ship sails smoothly.