Over 30 venture capital firms, investors support Microsoft-Activision deal

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A group of 37 venture capital firms and investors, representing over $130 billion in assets under management, today expressed their concern over the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) continued opposition to the Microsoft-Activision deal. 

In their statement of support, the firms argue that the FTC’s proposed legal standard would stifle investment in startups and ultimately harm competition. 

“If the FTC’s approach were adopted, many more acquisitions would be subject to lengthy and expensive regulatory review and litigation that few if any transactions would be able to withstand. As a result, many transactions will be abandoned upon challenge or never pursued, grinding American innovation to a halt,” the statement reads.

The FTC suggested to the US Court of Ninth Circuit weakening the legal criteria for blocking mergers and acquisitions, granting it more authority to halt such transactions. This change would have a significant impact on innovation and the entities that support it, and the hearing starts tomorrow.

“Competition law and policy affects not just the companies directly involved in a case, but also those who rely on the investment economy to nurture their ideas and create innovative technologies,” says Microsoft in the statement.

After a lengthy, back-and-forth process, the Redmond-based tech giant finalized its acquisition of Call of Duty maker, Activision Blizzard, in October this year. The $69 billion deal was initially opposed by the FTC and the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA).