The new biggest takeover in video game history: Microsoft buys Activision Blizzard
Just last week, Take-Two acquired Zynga for $12.7 billion. At that time, it was the biggest video game buyout ever, far ahead of the Bethesda deal in 2020 for 8.1 billion. We already understood all the potential that Take-Two had seen in Zynga for the mobile porting of its biggest licenses. But this time around, the numbers are simply stratospheric. Microsoft buys Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion. Let’s discover together the actors of this giant deal.
The purchase of Activision Blizzard by Microsoft: many studios change hands
When we hear the name of Activision Blizzard, we necessarily think of the two entities that make it up at the start and what they have published under this new name. The players of these licenses number in the millions over time: Call of Duty, World of Warcraft, Destiny, Crash Bandicoot, Guitar Hero, Vampire the Masquerade, Starcraft, Diablo, Quake or even Wolfenstein. As Microsoft buys Activision Blizzard, the social networks of the two entities send the news to each other.
Yet we think less of all the studios that make up this entity. Among them, there are now King (Candy Crush) since 2015 for a $5.9 billion deal, but also other big names like Treyarch, Beenox (Spider-man, Skylanders…), Infinity Ward, Raven Software, Toys for Bob, High Moon Studios, Demonware (matchmaking system), Beachhead Studios and Sledgehammer Games.
Technically speaking, although the deal has been done, it is a progressive redemption of shares in addition to a cash payment and, as long as the whole is not completed, the two entities will operate independently. For Take-Two, which intended to put itself forward with its acquisition of Zynga, Microsoft’s decision to buy Activision Blizzard overshadows this previous announcement and confirms Microsoft’s place at the top of the market.
A historic deal in the tech world
If Zynga was at the top of the ranking of takeovers in the video game industry, the fact that Microsoft is buying Activision Blizzard ranks this new giant takeover as top of the ranking of acquisitions in the new technologies sector whole. In second place in the ranking, the takeover of EMC by Dell in 2015 is barely lower with a deal of 67 billion.
After the buyout ends, we’ll be giving players as many Activision Blizzard games as possible in Xbox Game Pass and PC Game Pass, from new titles to iconic games. Activision Blizzard’s amazing games catalog. Today we also announced that Game Pass is now accumulating over 25 million subscribers. As always, we look forward to continuing our addition of value and new games to Game Pass.
Official Xbox blog post regarding the buyout
Finally, this deal comes in the midst of Activision Blizzard’s long troubles with its team management and problematic corporate culture that has been in the spotlight for many months. To find all details of Microsoft’s takeover of Activision, you can read the official blog post here.