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The Times quotes Gareth Mills on the CMA’s preliminary approval of the Activision Blizzard-Microsoft deal

The Competition and Market Authority (CMA) has provisionally cleared Microsoft’s takeover of the Call of Duty owner Activision Blizzard after a drawn-out dispute over the deal.

The CMA said there were now “grounds to clear” the transaction as Microsoft had submitted a new version of the deal to regulators.

Gareth Mills, Partner, is quoted in The Times:

The acceptance of similar, although not identical, remedies by the EU competition authority after the CMA had initially blocked the Activision deal had already put the CMA in an invidious position. The accusation that the CMA was “anti-business” made by Microsoft’s senior management at the time of the rejection of the initial proposed merger was undoubtedly, and almost certainly intentionally, politically incendiary and following the FTC’s failure to block the merger in the US in federal court, the CMA’s appetite for a protracted argument before the Competition Appeals Tribunal was clearly dimmed. The remedies offered by Microsoft allows the CMA to plausibly justify their original rejection whilst at the same time allowing Microsoft to complete a deal that allows them to take a significant stake in an exciting and growing market.

Read the full article in The Times (subscription required).

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