Initially announced at the beginning of the year, it seems that the purchase agreement of Microsoft and Activision Blizzard is still pending in a threadadding a new unknown to the already present doubts and controversies, now granting the shareholders a new weight that it could even completely cancel this operation.
According to information shared from GamesIndustry.bizthe video game publisher made an SEC filing with investors in which a virtual meeting next April 28, in which all shareholders will be asked to cast a non-binding advisory vote on the merger. Although in reality, this vote will have more weight than this first announcement suggests. And it is that despite the nature of the vote, for its part, Activision Blizzard has highlighted the strong importance they give to the participation of shareholders, ensuring that if the majority of them do not approve the merger, it will not take place.
However, the board of directors of Activision Blizzard has shared their unanimous decision that selling the company to Microsoft is “advisable, fair and in the best interest« of all involved, including shareholders. So it seems that this vote could be more geared to whether or not Microsoft will get ownership of the franchises of the company such as Call of Duty, World of Warcraft, Diablo, Overwatch, StarCraft, Crash Bandicoot or Spyro the Dragon, this others.
The decision of the shareholders: ethics and economic interests in the balance
Looking ahead to the internal decision, if shareholders vote to approve and complete the merger will be entitled to 95 dollarsin cash and without interest, for each action they own in Activision Blizzard (an extra bonus above the $79 current value of the shares themselves), making way for the company to become a wholly owned subsidiary of Microsoft, thus stripping its publicly traded status on Nasdaq.
On the other hand, if they refuse the merger and it is not completed, not only will they not obtain this additional income, but would face a significant drop in their share priceaffected not only by the loss of the value obtained after the announcement, but also by the weight of the termination fee of the agreement, which could amount to up to 3 billion dollars.
The additional weight of the law
However, these are not the only factors on which the closing of the purchase of Activision Blizzard by Microsoft depends, being still pending resolution of the possible abuse of privileged information within the publisher itselfwhich could lead to financial penalties whether or not the operation is completed.