Microsoft’s appeal against the UK Competition and Market Authority (CMA) for its attempt to block the company’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard is set to be heard in July.
The announcement came during a case management conference on Tuesday.
“The hearing of the substance of this application will take place in the fortnight commencing July 24, so the weeks commencing the 24th and 31st of July,” Judge Marcus Smith said. “I’m not expecting it to take the whole of those 10 days but I would like the parties to err on the side of longer rather than shorter oral submissions. It seems to me that that is an excess that we can afford.”
He added: “There is a tendency—and it’s very much driven by the Tribunal rather than the parties—to cut submissions to shorter than they perhaps ought to be. I want to do the reverse in this case. I want to have the parties understand that we will want to give them every opportunity to unpack the difficulties of this case in oral submissions and for us to have the time to do that.”
According to Microsoft, the company says the CMA has failed on five grounds, including making “fundamental errors in its assessment of the Applicant’s current position in cloud gaming services”.
While Microsoft starts to focus on its appeal, the company is also preparing for its case against the United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The FTC is suing Microsoft to stop the acquisition from closing.
Should Microsoft win its appeal, it will then have to go back through the CMA for approval. Recently, the deal was approved by the EU with the CMA coming out defending itself shortly thereafter.
What do you think ultimately happens with Microsoft’s appeal against the UK CMA in July?
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