Budapest Post

Cum Deo pro Patria et Libertate
Budapest, Europe and world news

UK games sector wanted Microsoft deal, says Sir Ian Livingstone

UK games sector wanted Microsoft deal, says Sir Ian Livingstone

The UK games sector was in favour of Microsoft's bid for US firm Activision being approved, according to the man who led the company behind Tomb Raider.

Sir Ian Livingstone, also co-founder of Games Workshop, said it would be "odd" if the UK was the only place to object.

The blocking of the deal by the UK regulator provoked a furious response from Microsoft, with its president saying the move was "bad for Britain".

The UK's move means the multi-billion dollar deal cannot go ahead globally.

The planned $68.7bn (£55bn) deal would have been the gaming industry's biggest ever takeover, and Microsoft would have taken ownership of popular games titles such as Call of Duty, Candy Crush and World of Warcraft.

US and EU regulators have yet to decide on whether to approve the deal, but on Wednesday the UK's Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) blocked it, saying it was concerned the deal would offer reduced innovation and less choice for gamers in the fast-growing cloud gaming business.

Both Microsoft and Activision have said they will appeal against the CMA's decision.

On Thursday, Microsoft president Brad Smith launched a fierce attack on the judgement, telling the BBC that it marked Microsoft's "darkest day" in its four decades of working in the UK.

"People are shocked, people are disappointed, and people's confidence in technology in the UK has been severely shaken," he said, adding that the European Union was a better place to start a business.

A spokesman for Prime Minister Rishi Sunak said Mr Smith's claims were "not borne out by the facts", adding that the UK games sector had doubled in size over the past 10 years.

Sir Ian, who is now co-founding partner of gaming investment group Hiro Capita, told the BBC's Today programme: "I think the sentiment of the games industry itself in the UK is for it to go ahead.

Sir Ian said the UK's games industry was "a great British success story"


"It would be odd if the UK was the only region to object to this acquisition going forward," he added.

"I would hope that they can sit down and perhaps negotiate a settlement which might be in everybody's interest over time."

Sir Ian said the UK's games industry was "a great British success story", having developed some of the biggest franchises in the world including Tomb Raider and Grand Theft Auto.

"It's always been overdelivering in content but always underserved by capital and recognition," he added.

"This is a highly competitive market and any negative sentiment is not good for the industry or indeed the UK economy."

The CMA is the first regulator to announce its decision, but last year the US Federal Trade Commission began a legal challenge to block the takeover.

In March, EU regulators delayed their decision after Microsoft proposed concessions to get the deal over the line.

Sir Ian said "it's somewhat come as a surprise that they [the CMA] said no at this time".

However, Gareth Sutcliffe, senior games analyst at Enders Analysis, said the deal "has been in trouble for a while".

He added that Microsoft "simply didn't do the necessary regulator outreach to get this deal over the line".

Newsletter

Related Articles

0:00
0:00
Close
Italian Activist Ilaria Salis Returns Home After Election to European Parliament
England Faces Serbia in Euro Opener with Defensive Concerns
Dermatologist Warns Against Sunbed Usage
UK Man Jailed for Non-Consensual Condom Removal
US, Britain, Canada Accuse Russia of Interference in Moldova’s Election
EU Urged to Welcome Skilled Russians to Weaken Putin
EU Elections Overview: Far-Right Gains and Major Political Shifts
Israel Rescues Four Hostages from Gaza
Emmanuel Macron Calls for Snap Election
Jordan Bardella: Young Far-Right Leader Poised for Future Political Influence in France
Dutch Military Intel Uncovers Extensive Chinese Cyber Espionage
Turkish Student Arrested for Using AI to Cheat in University Exam
Rise in Dengue and Other Mosquito-Borne Diseases in Europe Due to Climate Change
Far-Right National Rally Dominates France's EU Vote
Macron Calls Snap Legislative Elections After Far-Right Victory
Far-Right Gains Significantly in EU Election
Orban’s Fidesz Party Wins Majority in Hungary’s EU Elections as New Challenger Emerges
Meloni's Far-Right Party Wins European Elections in Italy
Key Insights from the European Union Elections
European Union Elections and Rise of Far-Right Parties
Macron Dissolves Parliament and Calls Snap Elections
Russia Adds Yulia Tymoshenko to Wanted List
Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen Assaulted in Central Copenhagen
Germany and France Oppose EU Luxury Car Restrictions to Russia
French Citizen Arrested in Russia for Alleged Military Intelligence Gathering
Germany's Defense Minister Calls for War Preparedness by 2029
Deutsche Bank Revises Eurozone GDP Outlook for 2023
Widening Wealth Gap in Europe
FTI Group Files for Insolvency, Affecting Thousands of Travelers
Germany Announces €23 Billion Tax Cuts to Support Inflation-Hit Households
West Nears Plan to Tap $300bn in Frozen Russian Assets
The European Central Bank (ECB) has cut interest rates for the first time in nearly five years
Putin Warns Against Western Arms Deliveries to Ukraine
Slovak PM Blames Opposition for Assassination Attempt
Study Finds Covid Vaccines May Have Contributed to Excess Deaths
EU Commission Considers Broader Digital Surveillance Measures
Macron to Host Zelensky in Paris for Crucial Talks
Italy's Prime Minister Meloni to Visit Migrant Centers in Albania
Conservatives Plan to Define Sex as Biological in Equality Act
China Accuses MI6 of Recruiting Chinese Government Staff as Spies
Nigel Farage Makes Eighth Attempt to Become UK MP
UK Poll Predicts Historic Victory for Labour Party
Orban Amplifies Anti-NATO Rhetoric Ahead of Elections
Meloni Urges EU Parliament to Adopt Right-Wing Coalition Model
Venice Implements New Tourist Restrictions
Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Urges US to Stop 'Smearing' China
Hungary Commits to Enhancing Investment and Trade with Cambodia
The Reality of Social Europe: Homes, Training, and Jobs
China Warns EU Against Tariffs on Electric Vehicles
Chinese EV Makers Target European Market with Competitive Prices
×