Microsoft recently admitted that scrutiny conducted by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to its planned acquisition of parts of Activision Blizzard was “tough and fair.”
The CMA recently published its findings, following a full investigation into the proposed merger. It involved the gaming giant, and Microsoft’s bid to purchase parts of the company in order to gain enhanced market share and better meet customer desires.
The investigation was highly thorough, with the CMA examining a number of potential issues, including: the effects on the gaming market; the potential for raised prices; and, the possible restraint of choice. Microsoft says that its views on the matter were taken into account as part of the investigation, and that its proposed remedies to any potential issues identified by the CMA were deemed sufficient.
Microsoft executive vice president, Harry Shum, commented: “we appreciate the fair, thorough, and timely review that the CMA has conducted. We believe the CMA’s remedies are both reasonable and practical as we continue to invest in the vibrant ecosystem of gaming and Xbox members.”
The CMA concluded that the acquisition of some of Activision Blizzard’s assets would lead to less choice and higher prices for consumers. As a result, the organization has set out some very strict conditions that Microsoft must meet in order to ensure its proposed remedies are sufficient. These include measures such as not using exclusive deals to the detriment of gamers; not substantially reducing competition in the videogame marketplace; and, not raising prices to customers in a way where there is a detrimental effect.
It is clear that the CMA are well aware of the potential issues that can arise from a deal between two of the largest players in the industry, and they are prepared to take steps to ensure customers are not adversely affected.
The impact of the CMA investigation and remedies set out by the organization will be monitored on an ongoing basis. This is in order to ensure that the necessary conditions Microsoft needs to meet are being enforced and enforced effectively. Such attention to detail can only be a good sign for customers who are concerned about the deal, and it highlights the organization’s commitment to fair play and competition in the gaming market.