The Microsoft-Activision merger continues to produce outrageous defenses. This time, a self-described CEO of an independent game developer believes that the deal should be approved by the UK’s CMA in order to prevent Tencent and Chinese publishers in general from gaining further influence in the gaming industry.
CEO says Chinese publishers have an “unfair advantage”
Labeled anonymously by the UK regulator as “Market Participant C,” the indie developer is concerned that Tencent is “already an investor in Activision” in its response to the CMA’s provisional findings on the merger. The CEO, who has worked with Sony, Microsoft, and Activision, writes:
If Microsoft is prevented from acquiring Activision, would the UK consumers be better served if they were acquired by Tencent instead?
The statement continues, warning that Chinese publishers like Tencent have an “unfair advantage” because Western companies are closed off to the Chinese market while they have free access to Western markets. Therefore, it believes that the Microsoft-Activision deal would benefit UK consumers to fight against “this fast-growing competition.”
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In fact, the CEO believes that trying to stop Microsoft and Activision from consolidating is foolhardy. This is because other publishers will continue to be pressured to merge “because consumers prefer to purchase games directly from online platforms giving them access to a larger catalogue.”
As reported in October 2022, Tencent has been aggressively pursuing acquisitions and controlling stakes in various game companies. It already owns several notables developers like Riot Games, Funcom, and Turtle Rock, and has invested in Ubisoft and FromSoftware.