Microsoft / Activision Blizzard merger inquiry

The CMA is investigating the anticipated acquisition by Microsoft Corporation of Activision Blizzard, Inc.

Case updates will be added to this page.

Information about how a phase 2 merger works, as well as what we’re investigating in this case can be found on our page: The CMA investigation into the Microsoft and Activision Blizzard merger

Phase 2

Administrative timetable

Date of referral 15 September 2022
Statutory deadline 1 March 2023

Contact

microsoft.activision@cma.gov.uk

Responses to the issues statement

23 November 2022: The CMA received a large number of submissions from the public, which it is still in the process of reviewing, and which it will take into account, where appropriate, in the course of its merger investigation.

Evidence

The publication of the evidence of any party on the CMA’s webpages does not indicate in any way endorsement by the CMA of the views expressed in the evidence or acceptance of that evidence. Publication in this way is designed to assist public understanding of the issues.

Issues statement

14 October 2022: The issues statement sets out the scope of the inquiry. It outlines initial theories on what might be adversely affecting competition, but it does not set out findings or conclusions.

Inquiry group appointed

15 September 2022: The CMA has appointed the inquiry group:

Martin Coleman (Chair), John Thanassoulis, Humphrey Battcock and Ashleye Gunn.

Terms of reference

15 September 2022: The CMA has referred the anticipated acquisition by Microsoft Corporation of Activision Blizzard, Inc. for an in-depth investigation.

Phase 1

Statutory timetable

Phase 1 date Action
1 September 2022 Decision announced
6 July 2022 to 20 July 2022 Invitation to comment
6 July 2022 Launch of merger inquiry

Response to phase 1 decision

Reference decision

15 September 2022: The CMA has referred the anticipated acquisition by Microsoft Corporation of Activision Blizzard, Inc. for an in-depth investigation, on the basis that, on the information currently available to it, it is or may be the case that this Merger may be expected to result in a substantial lessening of competition within a market or markets in the United Kingdom.

Reference unless undertakings accepted

1 September 2022: The CMA has decided, on the information currently available to it, that it is or may be the case that this Merger may be expected to result in a substantial lessening of competition within a market or markets in the United Kingdom. This Merger will be referred for an in-depth investigation unless the parties offer acceptable undertakings to address these competition concerns.

Launch of merger inquiry

6 July 2022: The CMA announced the launch of its merger inquiry by notice to the parties.

Invitation to comment: closes on 20 July 2022

6 July 2022: The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) is considering whether it is or may be the case that this transaction, if carried into effect, will result in the creation of a relevant merger situation under the merger provisions of the Enterprise Act 2002 and, if so, whether the creation of that situation may be expected to result in a substantial lessening of competition within any market or markets in the United Kingdom for goods or services.

To assist it with this assessment, the CMA invites comments on the transaction from any interested party.

These comments should be provided by the deadline set out above.

Published 6 July 2022
Last updated 23 November 2022 + show all updates
  1. Parties responses published.

  2. Response to phase 1 decision published.

  3. Issues statement published.

  4. Full text of phase 1 decision published.

  5. Administrative timetable published.

  6. Inquiry group appointment published.

  7. Decision to refer and Terms of reference published

  8. Summary of phase 1 decision published.

  9. First published.