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Microsoft Corp announced the acquisition of gaming company Activision Blizzard LLC, complete with mega titles such as “Call of Duty” and “Warcraft” for $68.7 billion or roughly $95 a share on Tuesday. At the close of this transaction, Microsoft will be the third-largest gaming conglomerate by revenue behind Tencent and Sony.
The gaming industry has become one of the fastest-growing sectors of the entertainment industry. Microsoft is looking to expand its mobile, PC, console, and cloud gaming as well as prepare for the mainstream adaption of the metaverse.
Chairman and CEO of Microsoft, Satya Nadella, stated:
We’re investing deeply in world-class content, community and the cloud to usher in a new era of gaming that puts players and creators first and makes gaming safe, inclusive and accessible to all.
Tuesday’s announcement comes on the heels of accusations that Activision Blizzard LLC is “fostering a culture of sexual harassment and gender discrimination,” according to ABC.
CEO of Activision Blizzard will remain on board after the acquisition, however, the business department will report to Microsoft’s gaming division CEO Phil Spencer.
Activision Blizzard CEO, Bobby Kotick, said the team has worked for over 30 years to create some of the most successful games. The combined talent of the tech giant and the gaming bigshot should produce some astounding results for gamers.
CNN Business reports that in August 2021, California’s Department of Fair Employment and Housing filed a lawsuit against Activision alleging that the workplace culture was of a “frat boy” mentality. Additionally the lawsuit stated women were discriminated against sexually and in their rate of pay. The statement continued, “the company’s executives and human resources personnel knew of the harassment and failed to take reasonable steps to prevent the unlawful conduct, and instead retaliated against women who complained.”
Following the allegations, J. Allen Brack stepped down as president and Activision Blizzard had a third party open an outside investigation following the complaints. It is believed that the acquisition is a direct response to the aforementioned allegations.
The cash transaction is supposed to close in 2023.
Written by Jeanette Vietti
ABC: Microsoft to acquire gaming giant Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion
CCN Business: Microsoft to acquire Activision Blizzard in $68.7 billion deal
Tech Crunch: Microsoft to buy Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion
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