In March, the FTC asked for more information from Activision Blizzard and Microsoft to further review their acquisition deal. After the additional information is reviewed, the FTC will have 30 days to challenge the acquisition. If not, the deal can continue as planned.
We now know, thanks to VGC, that Microsoft has provided the FTC with the information it was looking for. But even though Microsoft has provided them with the proper information, Activision Blizzard must do the same before a 30-day countdown can begin. The FTC states, “Typically, once both companies have substantially complied with the Second Request, the agency has an additional 30 days to review the materials and take action, if necessary.”
As soon as the FTC has received the proper information from both parties, the following could happen:
- The FTC will close the investigation and let the acquisition deal happen.
- The FTC will negotiate with both companies to add rules to ensure the market stays competitive.
- The FTC will stop the deal by filing for a preliminary injunction in federal court.
Although it is important to note that it’s unclear if Activision Blizzard has yet provided the FTC with the proper information, if not, then the 30 days to challenge the acquisition will be put on hold until Activision Blizzard shares the requested information. Once the FTC closes the investigation, the deal will be one step closer to being finalized.
However, as VGC points out, another challenge Microsoft might have to face could come from the Competition and Markets Authority. The CMA functions similarly to the FTC but for the UK. The CMA has a September 1 deadline to give its decision on the acquisition, and its decision could dictate whether or not the deal can be done.
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