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Microsoft to sell off Activision cloud gaming rights to Ubisoft in bid for UK approval

2023-08-22 18:34 by
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Microsoft is restructuring its proposed Activision Blizzard deal to transfer cloud gaming rights for current and new Activision Blizzard games to Ubisoft. The transfer of rights is designed to appease regulators in the UK that are concerned about the impact Microsoft's proposed $68.7 billion deal will have on cloud gaming competition. The restructured deal has triggered a new regulatory investigation in the UK that could last until October 18th.

"In January 2022, Microsoft announced the proposed acquisition of Activision Blizzard to advance our goal to bring more creative and innovative games to players everywhere and on any device, said Brad Smith, president of Microsoft, in announcing the deal. "Today, we are taking another important step regarding this transaction. To address the concerns about the impact of the proposed acquisition on cloud game streaming raised by the UK Competition and Markets Authority, we are restructuring the transaction to acquire a narrower set of rights."

The newly proposed deal covers perpetual, worldwide streaming rights for all current Activision games and those released in the next 15 years. Ubisoft will have exclusive control of those streaming rights outside of the European Union, allowing the company to make those games available on its own Ubisoft+ service and to license them out to other cloud-gaming providers (including Microsoft itself). In the EU, Microsoft will pay to license those Activision streaming rights back from Ubisoft to satisfy promises made to the European Commission regarding free licensing to competing cloud-gaming providers.

Smith said Ubisoft will compensate Microsoft through a "one-off payment" and a "market-based wholesale pricing mechanism" that includes pricing options based on usage.

Read more -here-


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