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Microsoft Xbox acquires Call of Duty developer Activision Blizzard for an estimated $70 billion

Microsoft Xbox acquires Call of Duty developer Activision Blizzard (Image via Xbox)
Microsoft Xbox acquires Call of Duty developer Activision Blizzard (Image via Xbox)

Microsoft Xbox has officially acquired Activision Blizzard, publisher of highly popular franchises such as Call of Duty, Overwatch, and World of Warcraft, for a reported sum of $70 billion.

Xbox, the gaming division of tech giant Microsoft, is one of the biggest publishers and console developers of the video game industry. From Halo and Forza to Gears and Age of Empires, the studio has many top-tier franchises under its belt.

Activision Blizzard, the famed publisher behind Call of Duty, has been going through a rough phase recently. Not only did many veteran developers leave the company but investors and fans were also uncertain of the current management.

As such, the monumental acquisition would not only add a major development and franchise catalog to Xbox’s portfolio but could also usher in a new era for Activision Blizzard.

Today is a historic moment. We are excited to announce that the world-renowned franchises and talented people at @ATVI_AB will be joining Team Xbox!   Full announcement details here: xbx.lv/3fCovjY https://t.co/jIXuYCcndG

Microsoft Xbox reportedly acquired Activision Blizzard for $70 billion

Over the last few years, Xbox has been expanding at an exponential rate. From veteran studios like Rare to young studios like Ninja Theory, Microsoft has acquired a versatile team of amazing studios under its umbrella.

The company's biggest acquisition prior to Activision Blizzard came in 2020, when Microsoft acquired Bethesda's parent company ZeniMax Media for $7.5 billion. While that certainly was a monumental shift in the company’s portfolio, this is a far bigger one.

According to several reports, Microsoft spent around $70 billion to acquire Activision Blizzard, making it the biggest acquisition of the gaming industry till date.

Microsoft is nearing a deal to buy Activision Blizzard, sources tell us. Deal value is nearly $70 billion. Story on @TheTerminal

Xbox head Phil Spencer said in an Xbox Wire post:

Upon close, we will offer as many Activision Blizzard games as we can within Xbox Game Pass and PC Game Pass, both new titles and games from Activision Blizzard’s incredible catalog. We also announced today that Game Pass now has more than 25 million subscribers. As always, we look forward to continuing to add more value and more great games to Game Pass.

He also said:

"The fantastic franchises across Activision Blizzard will also accelerate our plans for cloud gaming, allowing more people in more places around the world to participate in the Xbox community using phones, tablets, laptops, and other devices you already own. Activision Blizzard games are enjoyed on a variety of platforms and we plan to continue to support those communities moving forward."
Microsoft PR: “Bobby Kotick will continue to serve as CEO of Activision Blizzard… Once the deal closes, the Activision Blizzard business will report to Phil Spencer, CEO, Microsoft Gaming.”Not 100% clear yet whether Bobby will stay on after the ink dries.

While Bobby Kotnick will continue to serve as the CEO of Activision Blizzard, similar to Todd Howard over at Bethesda, it’ll be interesting to see how Activision Blizzard prospers under the Xbox leadership.

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Edited by Sandeep Banerjee
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