According to a report on Bloomberg, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission is now “leaning towards” appealing the court’s decision to deny it a preliminary injunction to block Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard.
The report claims that an appeal could be filed “as early as Wednesday,” citing a source said to be familiar with the deliberations.
As previously reported, the court ruled in favour of Microsoft yesterday, which means the company is now free to acquire Activision Blizzard in the US. Judge Jacqueline Scott Corley ruled that the FTC didn’t prove that the buyout would potentially harm competition in gaming.
This Court’s responsibility in this case is narrow. It is to decide if, notwithstanding these current circumstances, the merger should be halted perhaps even terminated pending resolution of the FIC administrative action. For the reasons explained, the Court finds the FTC has not shown a likelihood it will prevail on its claim this particular vertical merger in this specific industry may substantially lessen competition. To the contrary, the record evidence points to more consumer access to Call of Duty and other Activision content. The motion for a preliminary injunction is therefore DENIED.
Despite Microsoft now free to complete the deal, Judge Corley imposed a restraining order that prevents the Xbox format holder from closing the deal until Friday.
[Source – Bloomberg]