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Activision Blizzard CEO confident Microsoft acquisition will be completed by June 2023

"The process is moving along as we expected."

Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick still expects Microsoft's proposed $68.7 billion acquisition of the Call of Duty to publisher to close by June 2023.

Discussing the situation in a letter to employees, Kotick said the company is working alongside Microsoft to allay any concerns regulators might have about the deal.

As it stands, the merger has been approved by regulators in some countries including Brazil and Saudi Arabia, but is coming under increased scrutiny from others in key regions such as the United Kingdom and the European Union.

For instance, earlier this week the European Commission said it will conduct a full investigation into the deal over concerns the transition "may reduce competition in the markets for the distribution of console and personal computers video games and fro PC operating systems."

UK regulator the Competition Markets Authority is also worried that the proposed deal will give Microsoft an unfair advantage by allowing the console maker to make key franchises such as Call of Duty platform exclusive.

Kotick, however, appears to be less concerned about those potential sticking points, and suggests regulators are simply trying to "better understand the games business."

"We continue to work cooperatively with regulators in other jurisdictions, and the process is moving along as we expected. Because so many large global companies across the world are now competing in the nearly $200 billion dollar games industry, it’s understandable that regulators are trying to better understand the games business," wrote Kotick.

"This week the European Commission announced that we have entered the second phase of our review in the region. We will continue to cooperate with the European Commission where, in the countries they represent, we have many employees. We have been working closely with Microsoft to actively engage regulators in other key countries to answer their questions and provide them with information to assist with their review.

"People from across our business units and functions have been involved in this regulatory work, and I want to thank each of you for your tireless work and commitment to completing this merger, which we continue to expect to close in Microsoft’s current fiscal year ending June 2023."

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