The European Union’s antitrust watchdog approved Microsoft’s planned $75 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard giving the two companies a win after the deal hit a regulatory roadblock in the U.K.
The European Commission, the bloc’s competition enforcer, said it cleared the deal based on commitments by Microsoft to make Activision’s games, including those from its popular Call of Duty franchise, available on rival cloud-streaming platforms. The companies still need approval from other major competition authorities to close the transaction, legal experts say.
The commission’s decision comes weeks after the U.K.’s Competition and Markets Authority rejected the merger, saying it would crimp competition in the country’s gaming market. Microsoft has said it would appeal that decision. Monday’s approval in Brussels won’t have any direct legal bearing on that process, and antitrust lawyers say Microsoft faces long odds in overturning the British decision.