Brazil becomes the second worldwide market to approve Microsoft's Activision-Blizzard merger.
Today Brazil's Administrative Council for Economic Defense (CADE) issued an approval for Microsoft's $68.7 billion buyout of Activision-Blizzard. Brazil is the second worldwide regulator to approve the deal. Saudi Arabia's General Authority for Competition issued a no objection certification in late August.
CADE's filing says the regulatory body "approves the merger without restrictions." This is following weeks of testimonials, data-sifting, and direct oppositions from Sony legal counsel. In August, Sony representation said that "no rival can overtake Call of Duty," arguing that exclusivity of the $30 billion franchise could impact Sony's revenues and harm competition.
Despite Sony's Jim Ryan confirming that Call of Duty would eventually be restricted from PlayStation, the arguments were not enough to sway regulators in Brazil.
The deal is currently being scrutinized in the European Union, in the United Kingdom under the Competition for Markets Authority, and in the United States under the Federal Trade Commission. None of these institutions have yet to issue formal filings or approvals.
Microsoft has recently released a blog post evangelizing their position and plans with Activision-Blizzard post-merger, however one such point painted the company as a kind of underdog that would stay behind Nintendo and Sony in "traditional gaming." Interestingly enough, Xbox actually made more revenues than Nintendo did in the July 2021 - June 2022 period and could even overtake Sony's gargantuan $24 billion revenues following the mega-merger.
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and gaming head Phil Spencer have both said they feel "really good" about the merger, and analysts are indicating the deal will close.