Microsoft set out a plan to transfer various cloud streaming rights to game publisher Ubisoft Entertainment should a buy of Activision Blizzard complete, the company’s latest attempt to persuade the UK’s competition regulator to give its blessing.
Its revised proposal involves the transfer of cloud streaming rights for current and upcoming Activision Blizzard PC and console games to Ubisoft. It covers titles published over the 15 years after deal completion and those already available.
In a statement, Microsoft president and vice chair Brad Smith indicated the newly-structured deal also meets existing commercial commitments and regulatory concessions agreed to get the deal passed by other authorities.
“We believe that this development is positive for players, the progression of the cloud game streaming market, and for the growth of our industry”, Smith said, noting Microsoft continued to “navigate the review process” in the UK.
After receiving the proposal from Microsoft, the UK Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) announced it would open a fresh stage one investigation into the deal. It also ratified an earlier decision to block the transaction as it originally stood.
The CMA is working to a deadline of 18 October for its latest probe.
CMA chief executive Sarah Cardell acknowledged the restructured deal was “substantially different from what was put on the table previously”, though cautioned the new investigation did not constitute a “green light”.
“We will carefully and objectively assess the details of the restructured deal and its impact on competition, including in light of third-party comments. Our goal has not changed; any future decision on this new deal will ensure that the growing cloud gaming market continues to benefit from open and effective competition driving innovation and choice,” she added.