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Microsoft to Buy Activision Blizzard in Deal Worth $68.7 Billion

Image courtesy of Microsoft/Activision Blizzard

Microsoft has announced its acquisition of Activision Blizzard, bringing the likes of Raven Software, Blizzard Entertainment, and Infinity Ward under the Microsoft Gaming banner.

Announced today, Jan. 18, Microsoft have announced that they have aggreed to acquire Activision Blizzard. Phil Spencer, Microsoft Gaming's CEO said in an Xbox blog, "As a team, we are on a mission to extend the joy and community of gaming to everyone on the planet. We all know that gaming is the most vibrant and dynamic form of entertainment worldwide and we’ve experienced the power of social connection and friendship that gaming makes possible."

"As we pursue that mission, it is incredibly exciting to announce that Microsoft has agreed to acquire Activision Blizzard."

The announcement is yet another monster aquisition for Microsoft, following on from the company's purchase of ZeniMax Media and Betheda in 2021. According to IGN, Microsoft PR has confirmed that the deal is worth $68.7 billion, roughly nine times that of the $7.5 billion price for ZeniMax.

"We are incredibly excited to have the chance to work with the amazing, talented, dedicated people across Activision Publishing, Blizzard Entertainment, Beenox, Demonware, Digital Legends, High Moon Studios, Infinity Ward, King, Major League Gaming, Radical Entertainment, Raven Software, Sledgehammer Games, Toys for Bob, Treyarch and every team across Activision Blizzard."

Spencer clarified that until the transaction closes, Activision Blizzard and Microsoft Gaming will continue to operate independently. However, once the deal is finalized, Activision Blizzard will then report directly to Spencer.

The acquisition certainly comes at a tumultuous time for Activision Blizzard, who have been the subject of a workplace conduct lawsuit and accusations of sexual harrassment. Currently, staff at Raven Software are entering their seventh week of strikes.

Spencer briefly addressed the issues within the blog post, saying, "We deeply value individual studio cultures. We also believe that creative success and autonomy go hand-in-hand with treating every person with dignity and respect. "

"We hold all teams, and all leaders, to this commitment. We’re looking forward to extending our culture of proactive inclusion to the great teams across Activision Blizzard."