A judge has rejected an appeal for $69bn to be found in an attempt to disrupt economic growth in the technology sector.
A US judge has refused to block tech giant Microsoft from buying video game maker Activision – a setback for the administration of US President Joe Bidenwhich has sought to reduce integration in the technology sector.
In a ruling Tuesday, District Judge Jacqueline Scott Corley rejected the defense’s claims Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to temporarily halt Microsoft’s $69bn takeover of the video game company.
“We are disappointed by this decision because of the obvious risk that this merger could lead to competition in cloud gaming, subscription services, and consoles,” said FTC spokesman Douglas Farrar. “In the coming days, we will be announcing actions to continue our fight to protect competition and protect consumers.”
The ruling represents a victory for Microsoft and a blow to federal regulators pursuing antitrust cases.
Under the leadership of Biden, the FTC, led by Lina Khan, has taken a courage against potentially criminal activity from tech giants such as Amazon, Google Alphabet and Meta, the parent company of Facebook.
The state board asked Corley for a temporary restraining order pending a federal judge’s review of the contract in August.
The FTC also said the deal would give Microsoft control over Activision’s games like Call of Duty, which could limit their use of rival games.
During the five-day trial, which took place in June, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said the company would have no incentive to restrict the use of Activision’s games for other purposes.
Corley sided with the tech companies, arguing that the FTC failed to show that the deal would harm competition.
“The FTC has not demonstrated the likelihood that it will succeed in its contention that this vertical merger would lessen competition,” Corley said. “In fact, the historical evidence points to consumers being able to access more Call of Duty and other Activision products.”
Activision shares rose nearly 5.6 percent following the news, and Microsoft President Brad Smith said he was “thankful” for the “swift and comprehensive decision” in a post on Twitter.