Microsoft agrees to buy Activision Blizzard for $70 billion

Microsoft agrees to buy Activision Blizzard for $70 billion


Microsoft has agreed to buy Activision Blizzard in an “all-cash deal worth $68.7 billion.” If approved, the deal would give “Team Xbox” full ownership of iconic IPs like Call of Duty, Warcraft, Diablo, and more, and increase its workforce by nearly 10,000.

The story first broke in The Wall Street Journal and was later confirmed in Bloomberg’s The Terminal. Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer has since confirmed the acquisition on the Xbox Blog.

“The announcement that Microsoft has agreed to acquire Activision Blizzard is incredible,” Spencer wrote. “We will offer as many Activision Blizzard games as possible on Xbox Game Pass and PC Game Pass, including new titles and titles from Activision Blizzard’s incredible catalog. We also announced today that Game Pass now features over 2,500 10,000 subscribers. Activision Blizzard’s fantastic franchises will also accelerate our cloud gaming initiatives, bringing more people in more places around the world to the Xbox community.”

Microsoft News Center has its own version of the announcement, with a statement from CEO Satya Nadella, and Activision Blizzard’s newsroom has a statement from CEO Bobby Kotick . One of the other details to glean in these announcements is that Kotick will stay on, at least for now, despite Activision Blizzard’s ongoing lawsuits over workplace discrimination and harassment. You can read about all these developments in our interpretive story.

Microsoft said it intends to use the acquisition to “provide building blocks for virtual worlds” and underscores its value in mobile games — Activision Blizzard also owns King, most notably Candy Crush, the main developer of mobile games.

Today is a historic moment.We are pleased to announce that world-renowned franchises and talent @ATVI_AB Will be joining the Xbox team!

Full announcement details are here:

—Xbox (@Xbox) January 18, 2022

It’s hard to overstate the impact of this acquisition. When Microsoft bought Bethesda owner ZeniMax Media for $7.5 billion in 2020, we all thought it was the biggest deal of our lives, but it really was an earthquake. Activision Blizzard is one of the largest video game publishers in the world, owns some of the most profitable game franchises, and employs nearly 10,000 people.

In fact, the impact on the gaming industry is so great that it raises questions about fair play. The deal still needs regulatory approval, which it may or may not receive under U.S. antitrust laws. Kotick’s statement said: “Transactions like this could take a significant amount of time to close. Pending we obtain all necessary regulatory approvals and satisfy other customary closing conditions, we expect to close in Microsoft’s 2023 fiscal year ending June 30, 2023. At some point, we will continue to operate fully autonomously.”

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Kirsten Bennett
Kirsten is a passionate writer who loves games, and one day he decided to combine the two. She is now professionally writing niche articles about Consoles and hardware .