FTC Reportedly Looking Into Sony’s Deal to Acquire Bungie, Too

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A new report shared today by The Information reveals that the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is looking into Sony's deal to acquire game developer Bungie for $3.6 billion.

The investigation could potentially delay the deal's closure by around six months, pushing it into early 2023, though that doesn't necessarily mean the FTC will actually sue to block it. The Federal Trade Commission's primary concern appears to be ensuring that a popular game like Destiny remains accessible on multiple platforms, even though Sony itself said from the very beginning that Bungie would remain a multiplatform studio after the acquisition.

Sony: Acquiring Bungie Is a Major Step Towards Multiplatform, Metaverse

It's another sign of the highly aggressive stance the FTC has taken against mergers and acquisitions since president Joe Biden appointed Lina Khan as the organization's chair. A known critic of big tech corporations, Khan has already sued to block NVIDIA's deal to acquire Arm Holdings for $40 billion, which was the last straw before NVIDIA decided to throw in the proverbial towel and abandon the acquisition attempt earlier this year.

Of course, the FTC is also already probing the massive $70 billion deal that could bring Activision Blizzard into Microsoft's fold. In March, the Federal Trade Commission formally requested additional info and documentary material in connection with the ongoing review of the transaction.

On April 1st, we also learned of four US senators (Elizabeth Warren from Massachusetts, Bernie Sanders from Vermont, Cory Booker from New Jersey, and Sheldon Whitehouse from Rhode Island pushing the FTC for a stricter review of the Microsoft + Activision Blizzard deal.

Meanwhile, Activision Blizzard shareholders have approved the merger with an overwhelming majority (over 98% of votes were in favor). The road towards closure remains thorny, though, and the company just received a new lawsuit from New York City that argues the allegations made against Bobby Kotick made the CEO unfit to negotiate the deal. The lawsuit also expresses concern that the deal could be a way for Kotick and other board directors to escape liability.

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