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Image: Activision

Update [Thu 13th Jul, 2023 03:00 BST]:

Microsoft's vice chair and president Brad Smith has now issued a statement, mentioning how the tech giant is "disappointed" by the FTC's appeal. Here's what he had to say:

Brad Smith: “The District Court’s ruling makes crystal clear that this acquisition is good for both competition and consumers. We’re disappointed that the FTC is continuing to pursue what has become a demonstrably weak case, and we will oppose further efforts to delay the ability to move forward.”

Activision Blizzard's CCO and EVP of corporate affairs, Lulu Cheng Meservey, has also issued a response via social media while Blizzard president Mike Ybarra shared the following one-liner: "Your tax dollars at work".

Lulu Cheng Meservey: "The facts haven’t changed. We’re confident the U.S. will remain among the 39 countries where the merger can close. We look forward to demonstrating the strength of our case in court - again."

Original article [Thu 13th Jul, 2023 01:00 BST]:

Although it seemed like Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard was almost across the line, in an update, the FTC has now filed an appeal against Judge Corley's decision to deny the preliminary injunction request.

This information comes via The Verge's senior editor Tom Warren. The regulator's argument behind this appeal has not been revealed yet, and apparently won't be until it's submitted to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

The source goes on to explain how the regulator now requires the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals to issue "an emergency stay to extend the existing temporary restraining order" due to expire on 14th July. And it's further noted how the appeals court may not rule before the "deal deadline" on 18th July, which means Microsoft could still finalise the acquisition early next week.

Microsoft is also in the process of working through a possible restructuring of the deal with the UK Competition and Markets Authority.

If we hear any updates, we'll let you know.