Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has expressed immense confidence in Xbox acquisition of Activision. Earlier this year, Xbox announced it had plans to acquire Activision Blizzard for just shy of $70 billion, because who doesn't have that kind of money to throw around? The deal would mean Xbox would take ownership of the publisher and all of its developers and IPs, including the lucrative Call of Duty franchise. The deal has been heavily scrutinized for months and still has a ways to go with the deal expected to be closed by summer 2023. Fans, regulators, and other company executives have raised concern over the deal, especially after Xbox acquired Bethesda, meaning the platform would have ownership of some of the biggest franchises ever.
One of the most vocal people contesting the deal is PlayStation boss Jim Ryan who fears Call of Duty could become exclusive to Xbox, a franchise that currently performs very well on Sony's console due to marketing deals. Some think regulators may hear Sony's concerns and veto the deal, but Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella doesn't think so. When speaking to Bloomberg, he spoke about his confidence in the Activision deal and noted that Sony has also acquired a few developers this year, likely referring to PlayStation's purchase of Bungie.
"For us, in gaming, we have one goal, which is to bring more games to more gamers on all platforms and provide more choice for publishers and developers everywhere," said Nadella. "Everything we are doing with content, cloud, and community really is about driving that choice and that opportunity. We feel very, very confident. Of course, any acquisition of this size will go through scrutiny, but we feel very, very confident that we'll come out. We are number four, number five depending on how you count in gaming. In fact, the number player in this case [is] Sony even in this period has acquired three companies! So if this is about competition, let us have competition."
There is still a lot of confusion over the Xbox and Activision deal. Xbox has said it plans to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation, but Jim Ryan has noted that deal only lasts for three years. It will likely be a while before we really see what Xbox's true grand plan is, but it should be a fascinating story to follow.
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