Chile’s Fiscalia Nacional Economica (FNE), the regulatory agency that oversees mergers and acquisitions in the country, has approved Microsoft’s proposed $69B USD acquisition of Activision Blizzard. In its ruling (found here and first reported by VGChartz), the agency determined that the acquisition would not reduce competition in a substantial way to warrant opposition to the deal.
The approval was first revealed by Activision Blizzard EVP of Corporate Affairs and CCO Lulu Cheng Meservey, who wrote on social media:
“Chile’s competition authority, FNE, has now approved our acquisition by Microsoft, joining regulators elsewhere that have also recognized the deal’s benefits for competition and players,” she wrote on Twitter. “As other responsible regulators review the facts, we expect more approvals like this one.”
Chile joins only a handful of governments that have approved the acquisition including Serbia, Saudi Arabia, and Brazil.
Microsoft is facing an uphill battle to get approval in some of the most important regions in the world including the UK, the European Union, and the United States. Most of that opposition appears to be related to concerns about Activision’s popular shooter Call of Duty being removed from competing platforms such as Sony’s PlayStation and Nintendo’s Switch, and becoming an exclusive on Xbox sometime in the future.
Microsoft has already signed a 10 year commitment to continue publishing the game on Nintendo platforms and the biggest PC gaming platform on the planet, Steam. Microsoft has also offered Sony a similar deal for its PlayStation platform, but Sony has thus far resisted.
While it is almost a certainty that Microsoft will have to make a number of concessions to appease regulators around the world, the company has indicated that it is ready to fight the Federal Trade Commission in court to get approval in the United States.
In fact, Microsoft formally responded to the FTC lawsuit filed in federal court blocking the deal earlier this week. In its response, the company claims that the agency’s legal action violates its Fifth Amendment right to due process, and a litany of other reasons why the deal should be allowed to go forward. You can read Microsoft’s official response here