Microsoft will acquire video game publisher Activision Blizzard as it works to solidify its role in the metaverse.
The deal, valuing Activision at $68.7 billion, will give Microsoft a clear path into the gaming industry and make it the “third-largest gaming company by revenue, behind Tencent and Sony.”
Once the deal closes, Microsoft will add Activision’s games to Xbox Game Pass that will include major video game franchises such as Warcraft, Call of Duty, and others.
The acquisition follows several allegations of sexual harassment from various employees against Activision Blizzard, with the firm reaching an $18 million settlement with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission last September. However, this settlement is being appealed.
“We’re investing deeply in world-class content, community and the cloud to usher in a new era of gaming that puts players and creators first and makes gaming safe, inclusive and accessible to all,” said Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft.
This massive purchase suggests that Microsoft is going all-in on the metaverse, which promises to create a new universe where people will interact, make purchases, and work – virtually.
The deal is expected to close in the 2023 fiscal year according to Microsoft.