UK blocks Microsoft-Activision gaming deal, biggest in tech

London, April 26 (BNA): British antitrust regulators on Wednesday blocked Microsoft’s $69 billion purchase of video game maker Activision Blizzard, thwarting the largest technology deal in history over fears it would stifle competition for blockbuster titles like Call of Duty at a faster rate. time. Cloud gaming market growth.

In its final report, the Competition and Markets Authority said the “only effective remedy” for the significant loss of competition “is to prevent mergers”. The companies have vowed to appeal, according to the Associated Press.

The cash deal announced 15 months ago has faced stiff opposition from rival Sony, which makes the PlayStation gaming system, and has also been scrutinized by regulators in the US and Europe over concerns that it would give Microsoft and its Xbox console control over successful franchises. Like Call of Duty and World of Warcraft.

Liam Dean, games industry analyst at research firm Omdia, said the UK watchdog’s decision “came a surprise to most people” and added to global uncertainty about the deal.

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