Tech giants Google and Nvidia have reportedly “expressed concerns” to the United States’ Federal Trade Commission (FTC) over Microsoft‘s acquisition of Activision Blizzard.
As reported by Bloomberg, both companies reached out to the FTC to argue that Microsoft acquiring Activision Blizzard – the publisher behind Candy Crush, Call of Duty, World of Warcraft and more – would harm competition within the games industry.
Additionally, the article reports that Google and Nvidia both provided information supporting the FTC’s claim that Microsoft’s acquisition could give the company an unfair advantage in mobile and cloud markets, along with subscription-based fields like Xbox Game Pass or PlayStation Plus.
However, a source has told Bloomberg that Nvidia stopped short of actually opposing the acquisition.
Back in December, the FTC announced its intent to block Microsoft’s proposed acquisition of Activision Blizzard.
“With Activision’s content, Microsoft would have the ability and increased incentive to withhold or degrade Activision’s content in ways that substantially lessen competition – including competition on product quality, price, and innovation,” reads the FTC’s filed complaint. “This loss of competition would likely result in significant harm to consumers in multiple markets at a pivotal time for the industry.”
“Microsoft has already shown that it can and will withhold content from its gaming rivals,” added Holly Vedova, director of the FTC’s Bureau of Competition. “We seek to stop Microsoft from gaining control over a leading independent game studio and using it to harm competition in multiple dynamic and fast-growing gaming markets.”
In a statement provided to NME today (January 13), a Microsoft spokesperson said: “We are prepared to address and have been proactively addressing issues raised by regulators and competitors to ensure that the deal closes with confidence. We want people to have more access to games, not less.”
The company has repeatedly argued that its acquisition would not harm competition. Xbox head Phil Spencer has also accused the acquisition’s biggest opponent, Sony, of “trying to protect its dominance on the console” and attempting to grow “by making Xbox smaller.”
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