Battle Royale

Battle Royale

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  • Microsoft is gearing up for its first court battle with the US government in nearly 25 years. The Federal Trade Commission seeks to block Microsoft's $75 billion purchase of Activision Blizzard, requesting an injunction until an antitrust challenge is resolved.
  • This is the first antitrust clash between Microsoft and the US government since the 1990s when the Department of Justice accused Microsoft of using illegal tactics to maintain its PC monopoly. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) filed a case in administrative court last year to block the Activision deal, scheduled to begin on August 2.

Why it matters

Microsoft and Activision claim that the price for the acquisition is based on expanding game availability, not restricting it. They offered Sony a 10-year license, which was rejected. The deadline to complete the purchase is July 18, with a $3 billion breakup fee if it fails. A preliminary injunction could jeopardize the deal. The CEOs of Microsoft and Activision will testify in the five-day hearing.

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