Last week, UK officials announced that they would be launching a deeper Antitrust investigation into Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard. This is due to concerns on what the deal would do to the market and how it could lessen competition for consoles, subscriptions, and cloud gaming. Microsoft would become the world’s largest gaming company with Activision Blizzard and its franchises like Call of Duty, World of Warcraft, and Guitar Hero. In a new interview with Bloomberg Television, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said that he’s confident the deal will go through.
“Of course, any acquisition of this size will go through scrutiny, but we feel very, very confident that we’ll come out,” Nadella said.
One of the biggest parties to raise concerns against the acquisition was SIE CEO Jim Ryan who called the deal “inadequate on many levels.” Ryan believes that the deal for Call of Duty to remain on PlayStation for three years after the current agreement between Activision and Sony ends fails to take account of the impact on PlayStation’s community of players. “We want to guarantee PlayStation gamers continue to have the highest quality Call of Duty experience, and Microsoft’s proposal undermines this principle.”
Talking about the deal, Nadella notes that Sony has also been making acquisitions, such as Insomniac Games, Firesprite, Haven Studios, Nixxies Software, and most notably, Bungie. “So if this is about competition, let us have competition,” he said.
Nadella also talked about how Microsoft can both cope with a weaker economy, rising inflation and help its customers as well. “The constraints are real—inflation is definitely all around us,” he said. “I always go back to the point that in an uncertain time, in an inflationary time, software is the deflationary force.”
Microsoft is focused on “ensuring that our customers are able to do more with less,” Nadella said. “So in terms of outlook, I am optimistic about Microsoft’s value proposition. I’m optimistic about our share, but we are not immune from anything that is a macroeconomic headwind.”
Nadella says that “We are going to be more deliberate.” Microsoft will be “taking the same medicine, which is doing more with less. We have many businesses that are really doing super well and will continue to grow, but we will also be looking at what the macroeconomic situation is.”
With the company continuing to grow and increase productivity, “we’ll be able to navigate the waters.”