If you haven’t had time to celebrate the California court decision in FTC v. Microsoft case, it’s better to wait a bit, because the Federal Trade Commission has predictably filed an appeal, writes IGN.
We should remind you that the court’s decision states that “the FTC has not identified a single document which contradicts Microsoft’s publicly-stated commitment to make Call of Duty available on PlayStation (and Nintendo Switch).”
Reacting to the appeal, an Activision Blizzard spokesperson told IGN, “The facts haven’t changed. We’re confident the U.S. will remain among the 39 countries where the merger can close. We look forward to reinforcing the strength of our case in court, again.”
The possibility of an appeal was announced immediately after the verdict was announced, as the Federal Trade Commission expressed its disappointment with the decision.
In a separate statement, Microsoft President Brad Smith said: “The District Court’s ruling makes crystal clear that this acquisition is good for both competition and consumers. We’re disappointed that the FTC is continuing to pursue what has become a demonstrably weak case, and we will oppose further efforts to delay the ability to move forward.”
The appeal will consider the possibility of a preliminary injunction blocking Activision Blizzard’s merger with Microsoft before a scheduled retrial in August. Currently, the agreement is scheduled to be completed on July 18, 2023.
If the deal isn’t completed by that date, Xbox will be forced to pay Activision Blizzard $3 billion, leaving the merger potentially open for review. According to analysts IGN spoke with, the deal will still happen. However, the FTC still has various options to fight the gaming giants’ merger.