Activision Blizzard $3 Billion Bobby Kotick Break Up Fee Xbox Microsoft 1
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Microsoft’s unfathomable $69 billion buyout of Activision Blizzard is hanging by a thread after the deal was blocked by UK regulators earlier this week. In the aftermath of the decision, the trillion dollar tech titan immediately went on a rampage, piling pressure on the government by threatening to reduce its investment in Britain. It’s since said it’ll appeal the outcome, although analysts predict this is unlikely to succeed.

While executives at Activision Blizzard have indicated they’ll continue to support Microsoft’s attempts to push the unprecedented deal through, it should be noted that the Call of Duty maker will still profit handsomely if the deal breaks down. In an interview with CNBC, boss Bobby Kotick was asked about a rumoured $3 billion breakup fee, which he declined to deny, indicating the organisation is poised to pocket a fortune even if the deal collapses.

Kotick admitted that if the acquisition were to break down, shareholders would still come away with heavier wallets. “If it weren’t to get done, by the end of the year, I think we'll be sitting on something like $18 billion of cash,” the fat cat said. “And I think if you look at our 30-year history, we have deployed capital for the benefit of our shareholders very well and we'll continue to do that.” In other words, there’s plenty of cash to go around.

Obviously, all this helps to explain the Redmond firm’s scorched Earth approach to the UK’s decision on the deal, as it’ll not only have to pod out $3 billion for failing to get the acquisition over the line – but it’ll also come away completely empty handed, having invested over a year of effort into getting the deal done. Of course, when your bank balance is as big as Microsoft’s, this is the equivalent of losing a couple of pennies down the back of the sofa for the rest of us.

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