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Microsoft buys Call of Duty, Candy Crush, others for $68.7 billion cash

Microsoft is paying $95 a share, roughly 45 per cent above Activision’s stock price before the announcement.

• January 18, 2022
Microsoft, Call of Duty and Candy Crush

Software company Microsoft has announced its acquisition of Activision Blizzard, the video game maker behind hits like Call of Duty and Candy Crush, for $68.7 billion in an all-cash transaction.

This move makes Microsoft the world’s third-largest gaming company by revenue, behind Tencent and Sony.

“Today, Microsoft Corp. announced plans to acquire Activision Blizzard Inc., a leader in game development and interactive entertainment content publisher.

“This acquisition will accelerate the growth in Microsoft’s gaming business across mobile, PC, console and cloud and will provide building blocks for the metaverse,” the software company said in a statement

Microsoft is paying $95 a share, roughly 45 per cent above Activision’s stock price before the announcement and will continue running the company. 

This move will see the software company inherit Activision’s staff strength of about 10,000 employees, nearly 400 million monthly gaming users and access to some of the world’s most popular games such as “Warcraft,” “Diablo,” “Overwatch,” “Call of Duty” and “Candy Crush”. In return, Activision will have access to a range of artificial intelligence and other programming software.

Activision CEO Bobby Kotick will remain in his position until the deal is closed in 2023. Once the deal closes, the unit will fall under Phil Spencer, CEO of Microsoft gaming. 

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