The CMA reveals 75% of public response supports Microsoft’s Activision Blizzard merger

Robert Collins

UK CMA Office Logo

You may recall a few months back we reported that the U.K.’s Competition & Markets Authority (CMA), which is currently in the second phase of its investigation into Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard, is revealing a recent poll where it invited the public to comment on the deal via email in an effort to gauge public opinion.

The results are now in, and they are decisive. Over 2600 emails were sent (of these, Eurogamer reports that over 500 were “abusive or unintelligible” and “containing no other substantive content”). Of the remaining 2100 emails surveyed by the CMA, three quarters expressed support for the Activision Blizzard deal to go through.

A variety of arguments for and against the merger were received. Some of the arguments in favor of the deal were:

  • Microsoft’s position as the no.3 player in the gaming console market behind Nintendo and Sony. The deal would help the Xbox brand to compete with its competitors.
  • Microsoft’s proven willingness to make first-party content multiplatform, as it has done with Minecraft and its recent commitment to keep Call of Duty on Steam and Nintendo platforms for the next decade should the deal go through, not to mention a similar offer made to Sony. The point being that the acquisition would not be harmful to Microsoft’s competitors.

Call Of Duty: Black Ops 4 on Xbox One
The fate of the Call of Duty franchise has been the major sticking point for opponents of Microsoft’s pending buyout of Activision Blizzard.

One of the popular arguments in opposition to the merger is that it could lead to a precedent of consolidation in the gaming industry, which might discourage organic growth and innovation. Of course, anyone who’s been paying attention to the likes of Tencent Games and Embracer Group might argue that consolidation is already here.

At any rate, the CMA’s final report on the deal is due March 1st, 2023. In the meantime, the FTC in the United States has filed a lawsuit to halt the $68 billion acquisition.

Via Pure Xbox.