The Japan Fair Trade Commission have came to the conclusion that Microsoft's proposed acquisition of Activision Blizzard would not substantially restrain competition.
Microsoft's proposed acquisition of Activision Blizzard has been approved by another major regulator. The Japan Fair Trade Commission (JFTC) have released their report this morning , which clearly states that the merger would not restrain competition in the video games field.
The JFTC have published a lengthy, 43-page document, explaining their decision. Here's their conclusion, machine translated from Japanese:
"The Japan Fair Trade Commission reviewed the transaction and reached the conclusion that the transaction is unlikely to result in substantially restraining competition in any particular fields of trade. Accordingly, the JFTC has notified the Parties that the JFTC will not issue a cease and desist order, resulting in the completion of its review."
Japan is the fifth country to officially approve Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard. So far, Saudia Arabia, Brazil, Serbia and Chile have cleared the merger and it's becoming increasingly likely that the EU and the UK will also follow through with approvals.
UK's Competition and Market Authority (CMA) have already revealed a couple of days ago that they no longer think that the merger would impact the competition in the consoles space, which is a big win for Microsoft, as it was CMA who gave the impression earlier that they wouldn't approve the deal.
Microsoft expect to close the deal by June 2023 but it remains to be seen if that happens as the FTC have sued the company to block the merger. Though, it must be said that Microsoft said previously that they will close the deal if the EU and UK approve it.
With the acquisition of Activision Blizzard, Microsoft will own many beloved video game franchises like Call of Duty , Crash, Spyro, Diablo , Overwatch and more. On top of this, the company would own every studio including Infinity Ward , Toys for Bob and Blizzard to name a few.
All Activision Blizzard games are expected to launch day one on Xbox Game Pass moving forward.
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