The European Commission has decided to approve Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard, a deal that entails Microsoft purchasing the gaming company for $68.7 billion, making it the largest deal ever in the gaming industry.
However, the European Commission has set a condition for the approval of the acquisition. They require that Microsoft must license all cloud games from Activision Blizzard to other cloud gaming services that wish to have the games on their platforms for at least ten years. The European Commission states in its decision:
To address the competition concerns identified by the Commission in the market for the distribution of PC and console games via cloud game streaming services, Microsoft offered the following comprehensive licensing commitments, with a 10-year duration:–ec.europa.eu
* A free license to consumers in the EEA that would allow them to stream, via any cloud game streaming services of their choice, all current and future Activision Blizzard PC and console games for which they have a license.
* A corresponding free license to cloud game streaming service providers to allow EEA-based gamers to stream any Activision Blizzard’s PC and console games.
The European Commission’s decision to approve Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard contradicts the Competition and Markets Authority’s decision last month in the United Kingdom, which blocked the deal. The U.S. Federal Trade Commission has also expressed concerns about the deal and is expected to make a decision on their final stance on the matter at the end of the summer.