Investors Are Worried The Government Might Tank The Microsoft/Blizzard Deal

Of course, that's if it gets past shareholders in the first place.

QuintLyn Bowers
By QuintLyn Bowers, News Editor
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Activision Blizzard Microsoft Potential Merger Worries

No matter how much some people would like to see Microsoft buy out Activision Blizzard and then toss Bobby Kotick to the side, the fact is it just may not happen. Today, Bloomberg reported that Activision Blizzard shareholders are currently trading the company’s stock 25% less than the $95 per share offer Microsoft has put forth. This is apparently a signal that the shareholders don't believe the deal will be going through.

The problem isn’t with either company, per se. In fact, the shareholders are due to vote on it today and are expected to approve the deal (UPDATE: The vote was approved with over 98% approval)– despite some being opposed due to the "Golden Umbrella" Kotic is supposed to walk away with being a cool $22 million. Instead, the fear is that the antitrust enforcers of the Biden administration will shut it down. Or, if not that, delay it a good bit – which is also not entirely beneficial to the companies. And, even if it does get past the US government, there are still other countries to worry about.

To pass in the States, the deal will first have to make it past the Federal Trade Commission. Currently, the organization is led by an advocate "for a more forceful approach to reviewing deals", Lina Khan. In addition, the focus of that force is the bigger technology companies and they've already managed to block deals involving companies like Nvidia, Lockheed Martin, and Aerojet Rocketdyne. Concerns are that they will at least make the effort to do the same thing here. That said, other people aren't all that worried about it.

One analyst, Michael Pachter, even set the odds of a lawsuit happening at 10% and the chances of winning if it did happen at 0%. This has to do with how difficult it is to define the market the merger would create. As for the general sense of worry among others, he believes this to have more to do with a "lack of familiarity with the video-game industry" than anything of real concern.

Note: Activision Blizzard is still under investigation by the state of California for serious harassment charges. CEO Bobby Kotick is alleged to have known about such actions within his company – and performed some himself – and shielded the perpetrators from consequences.

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In this article: Microsoft, Activision Blizzard.

About the Author

QuintLyn Bowers
QuintLyn Bowers, News Editor
QuintLyn is a long-time lover of all things video game related will happily talk about them to anyone that will listen. She began writing about games for various hobby sites a little over ten years ago and has taken on various roles in the games community.

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