EU antitrust regulators are set to approve Microsoft Corp’s MSFT-Q $69-billion acquisition of Activision ATVI-Q next week, with May 15 as the likeliest date, people familiar with the matter said.
The European Commission’s imminent clearance comes nearly three weeks after the U.K. competition authority blocked the deal, the biggest-ever deal in gaming, over concerns it would hinder competition in cloud gaming.
The EU antitrust enforcer is expected to clear the acquisition after Microsoft agreed to licensing deals with cloud streaming rivals including Nvidia, Ukraine’s Boosteroid and Japan’s Ubitus, other people with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters in March.
It also has an agreement with Nintendo to bring Activision’s Call of Duty to its gaming platforms should the acquisition go through. U.S. distributor Valve Corp, owner of the world’s largest video game distribution platform, Steam, declined a contract saying it trusts Microsoft.
The Commission, which has set a May 22 deadline for its decision, declined to comment.
Japan approved the takeover in March while the U.S. Federal Trade Commission is also seeking to block it.