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Microsoft "listening" as EU joins others in formally contesting Activision Blizzard deal

Xbox maker "confident" it can find "path forward".

Microsoft has responded to the European Union's now-formalised antitrust warning, slapped down to contest its attempt at an Activision Blizzard acquistion.

The EU's intent to object to Microsoft's proposed $68.7bn deal was first reported last month. Now it has been finalised - and Microsoft has said it was "confident" it could address the issues raised.

As expected, the EU has intervened over a percieved risk in Microsoft owning Call of Duty, something it fears could reduce competition in the video games industry, Politico reported today.

In response, Microsoft said it was committed to "finding a path forward".

Eurogamer Newscast: What to look forward to in 2023 - including, hopefully, this deal finally being settled.Watch on YouTube

"We are listening carefully to the European Commission's concerns and are confident we can address them," a Microsoft spokesperson told Politico.

It's expected that Microsoft will offer concessions to the EU - and to the other authorities which have expressed objections - to get the deal approved. Indeed, the EU's warning was the next step along that path while informal dialogue on what those concessions might be continues behind the scenes.

Microsoft faces similar complaints by the UK's Competition and Markets Authority and the US Federal Trade Commission.

The company has already offered a 10-year contract to PlayStation to keep Call of Duty on the platform - something Sony was claimed to be as excited about as "Blockbuster was about the rise of Netflix".

Microsoft is still publicly working to a timeline of getting the deal approved worldwide by this summer. So far, only regulators in Brazil, Saudi Arabia and Serbia have given it the nod.

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