The US Federal Trade Commission has filed an injunction against Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard, seeking to block the purchase until the FTC can make a legal case against the buyout before the deal could be completed. A US federal court has agreed to the injunction, blocking the purchase.
Because of this, Microsoft cannot complete its acquisition of Activision Blizzard “after 11:59pm Pacific Time on the fifth business day after the Court rules on the FTC’s request for a preliminary injunction”, according to The Verge.
The injunction now gives the FTC time to make a legal case against Microsoft’s proposed acquisition of Activision Blizzard. The agency filed an antitrust lawsuit against Microsoft in December in an attempt to block the deal. Interestingly, the deal itself has a deadline of July 18, and if the acquisition doesn’t go through by then, Microsoft will have to pay Activision Blizzard $3 billion.
Since the two companies announced the deal back in 2022, they have both seen quite a bit of scrutiny from regulatory bodies from all over the world. Though the European Commission had approved of the deal back in May, while the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority has blocked the deal, a decision that has been appealed by Microsoft. More recently, China approved the deal as well.