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Pachter Expects Microsoft's Activision Deal to Close Soon, UK Has a 'Losing Legal Argument'

Pachter Expects Microsoft's Activision Deal to Close Soon, UK Has a 'Losing Legal Argument' - News

by William D'Angelo , posted on 08 February 2023 / 6,774 Views

The UK's Competition and Market Authority (CMA) earlier today released its provisional conclusion on Microsoft's Activision Blizzard acquisition.

It concluded the deal could put Microsoft in an even stronger position in cloud gaming and could stifle competition in the growing market, which in turn could harm UK gamers who are unable to afford consoles. It could also weaken the rivalry between Xbox and PlayStation in the video game console market and the CMA says this could also harm UK gamers.

Wedbush analysts Michael Pachter and Nick McKay in a statement said that despite the objections from the CMA, they expect the deal will still close.

"We read today's release as a signal that the UK knows it has a losing legal argument," they analysts said via GamesIndustry. "In our view, the FTC figured this out late last year, and rushed to file suit to block the merger in the hopes of being first to extract concessions from Microsoft.

"We believe that the CMA reached the same conclusion during its review, and accelerated its formal objection to the deal and proposed remedies in order to step in front of the FTC and gain bragging rights.

"The FTC has as yet to offer proposed remedies, and the CMA, by listing onerous structural remedies, has positioned itself to be the 'dragon slayer' in this action."

The analysts said that instead of splitting up Activision Blizzard, Microsoft will agree to multiple behavioral remedies. This might include keeping Call of Duty on non-Microsoft platforms for a number of years, which Microsoft has already pledged to do.

Pachter and McKay don't believe Microsoft would agree to making Activision Blizzard games like Call of Duty on competing cloud gaming services.

"We expect Microsoft's acquisition of Activision to close no later than mid-May," the analysts concluded.

A life-long and avid gamer, William D'Angelo was first introduced to VGChartz in 2007. After years of supporting the site, he was brought on in 2010 as a junior analyst, working his way up to lead analyst in 2012 and taking over the hardware estimates in 2017. He has expanded his involvement in the gaming community by producing content on his own YouTube channel and Twitch channel. You can contact the author on Twitter @TrunksWD.

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Zippy6 (on 08 February 2023)

Pachter is terrible even in his own field of expertise. Now he's trying to comment on law? Lol.

  • +11
Johnd (on 08 February 2023)

Well theres a kiss of death. Michael Pachter words always result in the opposite.

  • +9
CaptainExplosion (on 08 February 2023)

If it's Pachter saying this then the deal's dead.

  • +9
DroidKnight (on 08 February 2023)

Pachter,..the man that unites the VGChartz community.

  • +7
zero129 (on 08 February 2023)

Thats it its over.

  • +7
Bandorr (on 08 February 2023)

So my take away is that Microsoft is about to lose this, and that UK has the strongest legal argument possible.

  • +6
DonFerrari (on 08 February 2023)

Now you have it, the deal will go under.

  • +5
rapsuperstar31 (on 08 February 2023)

Has Pachter been right about anything ever? While I suspect this does go through, he isn't the guy you want vouching for you.

  • +4
SKMBlake (on 08 February 2023)

Okay the deal is doomed then

  • +3
VAMatt (on 08 February 2023)

Mid May is unrealistic. I think Q4 2023 is more likely at this point.

Other than that, I agree with them. These regulatory agencies are clearly playing political games. Most of the stuff they've been saying about this deal is so obviously wrong that anyone that knows anything at all about the gaming business can see that the arguments will fall apart instantly in any western court of law. So, there is no chance that it goes to trial anywhere. They're just doing the "we're standing up to big tech BS" dance that has become politically popular recently. They want MS to "give" them stuff (concessions) so they look like they did something useful.

  • +2
Juanita VAMatt (on 09 February 2023)

xD what a bullshit.

  • -1
Leynos (on 08 February 2023)

He's still around? Go back to the 7th generation when you still had a tiny sliver of respect enough to host a show on Game Trailers.

  • +2
SanAndreasX Leynos (on 08 February 2023)

Michael Pachter was the Phil Spencer of the 7th gen, as far as articles here were concerned.

  • 0
tslog (on 08 February 2023)

Oh crap, I was certain this deal was going to go through because the logic and circumstances are "always wrong" Patcher is saying the same, which make be believe it's all over for MS and the whole company will fully collapse in a matter of weeks.

  • +1
CaptainExplosion tslog (on 08 February 2023)

You mean Activision Blizzard? How would the deal failing result in that?

  • -3
mjk45 CaptainExplosion (on 08 February 2023)

While it's obvious that tslog was playing with the fact that Patcher has become a meme for the opposite will happen, he should have replaced company with acquisition to have it make sense.

  • +1
ArtX (on 08 February 2023)

Pachter? Close soon? Dragon slayer? Mid-May? I'll be back in 3999 to see this.

  • +1