Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has broken his stoic silence on the company’s largest acquisition to-date, telling Bloomberg he’s confident on the deal going through despite the UK’s CMA taking another investigatory look at the proposal.
The last time Nadella spoke publicly and specifically of the Activision deal was at the beginning of the year when commenting about how the acquisition would help shape the company’s competing metaverse vision. Three months ago, during Microsoft BUILD Nadella once again reiterated the potential Xbox would play in the company’s metaverse plans but spoke more in generalities during the opening keynote while keeping the spotlight off its pending $68 billion dollar acquisition.
However, in a recent interview with Bloomberg, Nadella spoke again about the Activision Blizzard deal and specifically about the recent scrutiny it is seeing in the UK.
Of course, any acquisition of this size will go through scrutiny, but we feel very, very confident that we’ll come out.
Nadella also mentioned Sony’s recent spending spree, where the company acquired Firesprite, Fabrik Games, Bluepoint Games, Bungie, and Savage Game Studios within the last year, as well as Microsoft relative position in the market as somewhere between the fourth and fifth spot in the video game market behind Sony, Tencent, and Nintendo.
With all factors considered, Nadella encourages the UK to keep things competitive by exclaiming, “So if this is about competition, let us have competition.”
While Microsoft has repeatedly promised to maintain its contractual obligations to Sony in the event it does successfully acquire Activision Blizzard, Sony continues to leverage panic over the possibility of the company reneging or ending relationships once it is legally allowed to do so.
Nadella also touched upon where the company is going during what many believe are turbulent financial times ahead.
The constraints are real. Inflation is definitely all around us. I always go back to the point that in an uncertain time, in an inflationary time, software is the deflationary force. [Microsoft is] ensuring that our customers are able to do more with less. So, in terms of outlook, I am optimistic about Microsoft’s value proposition. I’m optimistic about our share, but we are not immune from anything that is a macroeconomic headwind.
As international banks look to curb a global inflationary period with rising interest rates, businesses will quickly feel the impact as their debt interest begins to eat into their profits and layoffs become a deflationary tool in the short term to weather those ‘macroeconomic headwinds.’
Microsoft has yet to engage in any mass downsizing, but if Activision Blizzard comes onboard in 2023, we may see the company reconsider employee consolidation.