10 May EA says it doesn’t care if the Microsoft Activision deal goes through: “We’ll continue to be the number one publisher on their platform”
EA CEO Andrew Wilson has commented on Microsoft’s planned acquisition of Activision Blizzard, saying his company will continue being the biggest Xbox publisher whether or not the deal goes through.
In EA’s latest earnings call, Wilson admitted he doesn’t know whether Microsoft will end up owning Activision Blizzard, but assured investors that the end result of the buyout isn’t “material” to his company.
“We think we have the scale – again, back to our network, our IP, and our talent – to continue to navigate the future and lead the future of entertainment, and compete in the marketplace regardless of whether that deal goes through or not,” he said.
Wilson added that further industry consolidation is a near certainty and said he hopes EA “will have the scale to be a meaningful consolidator in that space.”
“I think that we have tremendous assets with respect to the future of entertainment,” Wilson said. “But as it stands today, I think we’re indifferent as to whether [the Microsoft Activision sale] goes through or not. We feel like we have an incredible strategy. We feel like we have an incredible opportunity, and whether it goes through a not, we’ll continue to be the number one publisher on the Microsoft platform.”
EA is indeed the biggest publisher for monthly active users on both Xbox and PlayStation, according to recent data provided by Ampere Analysis (via GamesIndustry.biz (opens in new tab)). The publisher is known for some of the most popular IPs in the industry, including The Sims, Battlefield, Dragon Age, Apex Legends, Star Wars, and the EA Sports games FIFA, Madden NFL, NBA Live, NHL, PGA, and UFC.
Wilson’s comments come as Microsoft and Activision face their most significant legal hurdle yet. Two weeks back, the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) blocked the merger over concerns that it would leave UK gamers with less “innovation and choice.” Microsoft responded by saying the move was “bad for Britain” and pledged to appeal the decision in court, and the CMA followed up by saying the Xbox maker’s argument was “not borne out by the facts.”
The Microsoft Activision deal tops the list of the biggest video game acquisitions of all time.