Cryptocurrency News

Microsoft Ramps Up Its Metaverse Plans With $68.7B Acquisition of Activision Blizzard

By January 19, 2022 No Comments

Key takeaways:

  • Microsoft is buying Activision Blizzard for $68-7 billion in cash to boost its presence in the gaming sector and lay the foundation for the metaverse
  • The acquisition that is planned to be finalized in the 2023 fiscal year will elevate the Microsoft gaming division to the third spot, behind Tencent and Sony
  • Activision Blizzard’s stock price spiked by 40% in pre-market trading

The acquisition of Activision Blizzard “will form the building blocks for the metaverse”

Tech giant Microsoft has announced it will be buying Activision Blizzard, one of the largest gaming companies and owner of some of the most popular gaming franchises, such as Call of Duty, StarCraft, Tony Hawk’s, World of Warcraft, to name a few.

Microsoft’s video game catalog is set to expand with popular titles such as “Call of Duty” and “World of Warcraft”. Image Source: Microsoft

According to Microsoft, Activision will be acquired for $95 per share in an all-cash deal that will be finalized in 2023. The massive investment will solidify Microsoft as the third-largest game developer in the world, trailing only Chinese gaming giant Tencent and Microsoft’s main rival in the gaming console space Sony.

Satya Nadella, chairman and CEO of Microsoft, commented on the importance of gaming for the development of metaverses:

“Gaming is the most dynamic and exciting category in entertainment across all platforms today and will play a key role in the development of metaverse platforms. We’re investing deeply in world-class content, community and the cloud to usher in a new era of gaming that puts players and creators first and makes gaming safe, inclusive and accessible to all.”

According to a recent report conducted by market research firm Emergen Research, the global metaverse market revenue is expected to grow from $180 billion in 2021 to $829 billion in 2028, with mobile gaming platforms estimated to experience more considerable relative growth than desktop gaming. 

It is no surprise then that Microsoft seems to be focusing on boosting its presence in mobile markets and intends to bring popular gaming titles, like “Halo and “Warcraft”, to users’ pockets through the Xbox Cloud Gaming service.  “With games like “Candy Crush,” Activision Blizzard´s mobile business represents a significant presence and opportunity for Microsoft in this fast-growing segment,” explained Microsoft.

Metaverse has been a hot topic in tech circles ever since Facebook announced its rebrand to Meta late last year and thus showcased its commitment to the rapidly growing sector. Metaverse projects in the cryptocurrency space have experienced a massive boost in their popularity as a result, with open metaverse worlds like The Sandbox and Axie Infinity reaching market valuations higher than some of their traditional gaming counterparts. Microsoft’s latest move will undoubtedly bring even more attention to the highly competitive sector.

While the price of Microsoft’s stock (MSFT) took a relatively minor hit of 2.43% when the news of the planned acquisition was made public earlier today, the shares of Activision Blizzard jumped more than 25% on the news and reached their highest value since August 2021.