Microsoft about to acquire Activision Blizzard and all its franchises in new $68.7 billion deal

Microsoft is about to buy Activision Blizzard. In Microsoft’s continued attempt at global gaming domination, and after spending a small country’s fortune on Bethesda, it is about to fork out the equivalent in $68.7 billion to acquire Activision Blizzard. This transaction, according to today’s press release, will make Microsoft “the world’s third-largest gaming company by revenue, behind Tencent and Sony.” Activision Blizzard has had its fair share of issues in the press as of late, but Microsoft is looking at the bigger picture for gamers here and will now absorb what appears to be all of the company’s major gaming franchises in the process. More details below. 

Microsoft to acquire Activision Blizzard

The transaction is still “subject to customary closing conditions and completion of regulatory review,” as well as approval from Activision Blizzard shareholders, but it is expected to close in fiscal year 2023. 

Microsoft is continuing to flex its checkbook to battle back against what has seemed like years of dominance from Sony’s PlayStation platform, but after acquiring the Bethesda franchises and now what appears to be all of Activision Blizzard’s, the tides are starting to shift. Not only has Microsoft made much of the Bethesda IP exclusive to its platforms, but this will presumably mean it will have a  stranglehold on Activision Blizzard’s, including the likes of Warcraft, Diablo, Overwatch, the Call of Duty franchise, and mobile gaming giant Candy Crush, among many others. That also includes “global eSports activities through Major League Gaming” as well as “studios around the world with nearly 10,000 employees.” 

Bobby Kotick will continue to serve as CEO of Activision Blizzard, and he and his team will maintain their focus on driving efforts to further strengthen the company’s culture and accelerate business growth. Once the deal closes, the Activision Blizzard business will report to Phil Spencer, CEO, Microsoft Gaming.

The deal will likely bolster Microsoft’s mobile game offerings and, more importantly for most gamers, its future-forward Xbox Game Pass library in a major way as well:

The acquisition also bolsters Microsoft’s Game Pass portfolio with plans to launch Activision Blizzard games into Game Pass, which has reached a new milestone of over 25 million subscribers. With Activision Blizzard’s nearly 400 million monthly active players in 190 countries and three billion-dollar franchises, this acquisition will make Game Pass one of the most compelling and diverse lineups of gaming content in the industry. Upon close, Microsoft will have 30 internal game development studios, along with additional publishing and esports production capabilities.

We will update this story as more details roll in, but it looks as though the deal will be going through, much the same way the Bethesda acquisition kicked off in 2020. Microsoft is now going to buy Activision Blizzard, your move Sony.

FTC: 9to5Toys is reader supported, we may earn income on affiliate links

Subscribe to the 9to5Toys YouTube Channel for all of the latest videos, reviews, and more!

Load more...
Show More Comments