Sony could lose hundreds of millions of dollars if Call of Duty becomes exclusive to Xbox platforms.
Microsoft's recent $68.7 billion buyout of Activision-Blizzard has prompted a big question: Will Call of Duty still come to PlayStation? The answer isn't quite simple. But the numbers are: Key financial experts like CitiGroup estimate that Sony will lose 10 billion yen to 30 billion yen ($87.5 million to $262.6 million) if Call of Duty doesn't release on PlayStation systems.
Activision's megaton franchise contributes hundreds of millions in distribution payments to Sony, Microsoft, and other platform-holders like Valve every year. The annualized release cadence is a dependable source of third-party earning contributions for Sony. It could also be the same for Microsoft, who would pocket Activision's 70% cut of all Call of Duty game sales and revenues.
After all, Sony's ecosystem consists of over 116 million shipped PlayStation 4 consoles and Microsoft would also forgo millions--or perhaps billions--in revenues if it pulled Call of Duty from PlayStation platforms.
In 2020 alone, Call of Duty generated $3 billion in total revenues across Warzone, mainline games, and mobile titles.
Microsoft has said it will honor all existing Activision partnerships and business deals and will not disrupt current multi-platform games. Sony is confident Microsoft will in turn respect contractual obligations with any deals Activision has signed before the acquisition.
"We will honor all existing commitments post close. As with Microsoft's acquisition of Minecraft, we have no intent to remove any content from platforms where it exists today."
"We remain deeply committed to our partnership and this acquisition does not change that. We will honor all existing commitments."
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