Otherwise known by its new name of Meta Platforms Inc., anonymous sources told Bloomberg that CEO Bobby Kotick and the board pursued a deal with Mark Zuckerberg's company.
Apparently, Activision wasn't completely on board with Microsoft acquiring it, but it was the only company to express any serious interest. Aside from Meta, Activision did approach one other company, but its name wasn't given.
In an interview with GamesBeat, Kotick possibly implied that EA could have bought out Activision, but it simply wasn't big enough.
"When you’re comparing us to, you know, $2 trillion companies and $3 trillion companies and trillion dollar companies and $500 billion companies, you realize, we may have been a big company in video gaming, but now, when you look at the landscape of who the competitors are, it’s a different world today than ever before," explains Kotick.
"I think that even if we were to have consolidated within EA, that wouldn’t have given us what we’re going to need going forward. And so you needed to have a big partner in order to be able to make it work."
Oh yeah, the scandals
In that same interview, Kotick denied that selling Activision to Microsoft had anything to do with the ongoing scandals surrounding the company. He also claimed that the drop in Activision's stock was primarily due to Overwatch 2 and Diablo 4 being delayed.
Activision was hit with a lawsuit for alleged sexual harassment, abuse, and discrimination last summer. Since then, Kotick himself was implicated in a Wall Street Journal report of not only knowing and covering up multiple incidents, but also threatening to have his assistant killed.
Kotick has been met with numerous demands by Activision employees and the general public to either resign or be fired. It's believed he will step down once the Microsoft acquisition is complete, but he'll likely still be given a substantial departing pay-out.
This will also mean Microsoft will be left to deal with the fallout of the scandals, plus the ongoing strike at Call of Duty: Warzone studio Raven Software. Some have expressed hope that, with Microsoft's new leadership, elements like the toxic working conditions will be improved, but others remain skeptical.
- Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard: what you need to know
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Michael is a freelance writer with bylines at the Metro, TechRaptor, and Game Rant. A Computer Games Design and Creative Writing graduate, he's been passionate about video games since the Game Boy Color, particularly Nintendo games, with Xenoblade Chronicles being his favorite game ever. Despite everything, he's still a Sonic the Hedgehog fan.