FTC Requested Additional Info on Microsoft + Activision Blizzard Deal
The US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has filed a second request for additional material and information on the Microsoft + Activision Blizzard deal earlier this month. The news came to light thanks to a proxy filing published yesterday by Activision Blizzard.
Here's the relevant excerpt from page 70 of the document.
On March 3, 2022, Activision Blizzard and Microsoft each received a request for additional information and documentary material (which we refer to as a “Second Request”) from the FTC in connection with the FTC’s review of the transaction. The effect of the Second Request is to extend the waiting period imposed under the HSR Act until the 30th day after substantial compliance by Activision Blizzard and Microsoft with the Second Request, unless the waiting period is terminated earlier by the FTC or as otherwise agreed between the parties and the FTC.
This is entirely expected; after all, it's the biggest deal of the past few years in the United States with the nearly $70 billion Microsoft would be paying.
We've previously reported that the FTC would review the acquisition instead of the Department of Justice (DOJ). The Federal Trade Commission is perceived as comparatively harsher in its reviews, especially since Lina Khan was appointed as its Chair. For its part, Microsoft has tried to reassure any potential regulatory concerns when it said Call of Duty and other popular Activision Blizzard titles would remain available even on rival platforms such as Sony's and Nintendo's.
For the record, the main reason for the proxy filing was to call for a special meeting of Activision Blizzard stockholders, scheduled for April 28th at 9:00 AM Pacific time. The meeting will be held virtually at this URL and it will include voting on the Agreement and Plan of Merger. The board is encouraging everyone to vote, since failing to do so will automatically have the same effect as voting against the proposal.
Under the terms of the agreement, shareholders will receive $95 in cash without interest for each share of Activision Blizzard's common stock. Shares are sitting at $78.84 right now, so it's definitely in each shareholder's interest for the deal to go through.
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