Microsoft, acquisition of Activision Blizzard: Brazilian antitrust approves and launches broadside to Sony

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After that of Saudi Arabia, theBrazilian antitrust (CADE) spoke favorably on theacquisition of Activision Blizzard from Microsoft, also sending a broadside to Sony. Basically, the thesis of the Japanese multinational according to which the deal would be anti-competitive was rejected and, in the reasons for the decision, it is clearly stated that it is not the institution’s task to protect individual competitors.

The antitrust doesn’t care much about Sony’s specific business, while acknowledging that it could be affected by the agreement, but about the market as a whole. The acquisition of Activision Blizzard would therefore not lead to a monopoly risk, despite the possibility of PlayStation losing the series call of Duty.

Thus, states the body (automatic translation from Brazilian Portuguese): “although Microsoft has control of a significant part of the markets for the distribution of digital consoles and games, the company would have no incentive to make it difficult for its platforms to be accessed by of publishers competing with Activision Blizzard, as this would necessarily lead to a reduction in the quantity and variety of the catalog of games available in the Xbox ecosystem, making the company’s products and services less attractive to consumers”.

Speaking of the Call of Duty series, CADE then found that it is not strictly necessary to ensure the success of the competitors Xboxesechoing what Microsoft has always said, then he concluded with what appears to be a direct dig at Sony, which evidently put more pressure than necessary to obtain a negative opinion (remember that the Brazilian antitrust does not express a binding opinion ): “the main objective of CADE’s activity is the defense of competition as a means of promoting the welfare of Brazilian consumers, and not the defense of particular interests of specific competitors.”

In short, although the antitrust admits the possibility that the acquisition will make some users switch from PlayStation to Xbox, in any case it does not see any risk for competition.

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