South Korea Approves Microsoft's Activision Blizzard Acquisition - NewsWilliam D'Angelo , posted on 30 May 2023 / 2,743 Views
The Korea Fair Trade Commission (KFTC) in South Korea announced it has approved Microsoft's $67.8 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard "unconditionally."
The regulator stated Activision Blizzard games in South Korea are not very popular in the country and the impact of Microsoft owning the publisher are small.
"The combined market share of games developed and distributed by Microsoft and Blizzard is small, the popularity of Blizzard’s major games in Korea is not as high as overseas, and there are a number of popular game developers that competitors can deal with alternatively, so there is no possibility of foreclosure to exclude competing game service companies," reads the findings from the KFTC.
"Even in the event of a blockade, the effect of converting competitors’ consumers to its service subscribers is minimal due to the low popularity of Blizzard’s games, and competitors have a significant market share, so there is no risk of exclusion from competition."
The KFTC report adds, "Considering that this is a merger between global companies, the KFTC exchanged views with major overseas competition authorities through several video conferences and collected opinions from stakeholders, including competitors, to reach a final conclusion based on a multifaceted analysis of the impact of the merger on the domestic market.
"However, the different judgements on whether to approve this case are due to the significant differences in the competitive situation of the gaming market in each country and the fact that the competition authorities of each country focused on the impact on their domestic markets."
Microsoft and Activision Blizzard are still facing an uphill battle as the UK regulator, Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), last month decided to block the deal over concerns with cloud gaming. Microsoft's appeals process with the Competition Appeal Tribunal (CAT) in the UK started today.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in the US also sued to block the deal last December.
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.