An internal email revealed as part of the FTC court case against Microsoft confirmed that as of 2020, Xbox boss Phil Spencer was interested in acquiring Nintendo. In fact, at that point he considered the company “THE main asset for us in the gaming industry”.
Like the limit relationshipsIn an email to Microsoft Executive Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer Chris Capossela and Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Marketing Officer Takeshi Numoto, Spencer wrote, “I totally agree that Nintendo is THE resource for us. major player in gaming, and today gaming is our most likely path to consumer relevance.”
“I’ve had numerous conversations with the LT at Nintendo about working together more closely, and I think if any American company had a chance with Nintendo, we’d probably be in the best position,” he continued. “The unfortunate (or fortunate for Nintendo) situation is that Nintendo is sitting on a big pile of money, it has a [Board of Directors] which until recently has not driven further increases in market growth or stock appreciation.”
Continuing, Spencer’s email revealed that, at the time, former Microsoft board member and ValueAct Capital co-CEO Mason Morfit was “massively acquiring” Nintendo stock. As a result, Spencer remained in contact with him as he was “likely to push for more out of Nintendo stock, which could create opportunities for us.” However, without this, Spencer saw “no possibility of a mutually acceptable merger in the near term.”
Despite this, Spencer was undeterred by the long-term idea – he even made it clear that “we’re playing the long term.” He wrote: “Ours [Board of Directors] saw the full article on Nintendo (and Valve) and am fully supportive either way if the opportunity arises, as I am.”
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