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Jan. 18, 2022, 9:08 p.m. EST

Sony Group Shares Fall Sharply After News of Microsoft Deal for Activision Blizzard

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Sony Group Corp. shares fell as much as 10% on Wednesday morning following news that Microsoft Corp. agreed to buy videogame heavyweight Activision Blizzard Inc. in an all-cash deal valued at about $75 billion.

The deal, if completed, would add a stable of popular game franchises, including Call of Duty, to Microsoft's already sizable videogame operation. Microsoft said the deal would bolster its portfolio of Game Pass subscription business.

The Activision acquisition should remove all doubts about the U.S. software giant's intention to take the console fight to another level, Asymmetric Advisors strategist Amir Anvarzadeh said in a note.

Sony runs the PlayStation console business and subscription-based service PlayStation Plus.

With Activision's biggest games such as Call of Duty now most likely to be added exclusively to its Game Pass roster, "the headwinds for Sony is only going to get tougher," Mr. Anvarzadeh said.

Microsoft said the transaction would make it the world's third-largest gaming company by revenue, behind China's Tencent Holdings Ltd. and Sony Group.

Sony Group shares were most recently down 8.4% at Y13,040 after falling to as low as Y12,805 earlier in the day.

Write to Kosaku Narioka at kosaku.narioka@wsj.com

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