Will Microsoft sell off its Xbox business? It doesn't look likely

Xbox boss Phil Spencer says Microsoft--from the top down--is "very committed" to the Xbox business.

by

Some Microsoft shareholders, including cofounder Paul Allen's investment group, have called on Microsoft to sell off its Xbox business as a means to boost profitability. Nokia CEO Stephen Elop, who now runs the Xbox business, was even reportedly interested in unloading the Xbox unit. But the Xbox faithful can rest easy, because any potential sales sounds pretty unlikely.

Asked by a fan on Twitter if Microsoft was committed to supporting the Xbox platform for the long haul, Xbox boss Phil Spencer said, "Yes, very committed." Support for the Xbox business is strong across the company "from the top of Microsoft to the Xbox teams," Spencer said.

According to previous comments from Spencer, new Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella is a "good supporter" of Microsoft Studios and the Xbox business unit itself.

Allen's investment group, Vulcan Capital, maintains that though the Xbox business has been successful, it's also detracting from Microsoft's core competencies, namely corporate customers. It's unknown if Microsoft has entertained any offers for the Xbox business.

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and you can follow him on Twitter @EddieMakuch
Got a news tip or want to contact us directly? Email news@gamespot.com

Discussion

220 comments
theKSMM
theKSMM

Part of the problem is that the making consoles is an expensive business.  That means that there are few parties to whom Microsoft could sell the XBOX -- think Apple, Amazon, Google -- and most of them are rumored to be crafting their own console competitors.  And I don't think XBOX is good enough financially to be a self-sustaining spin-off.

tightwad34
tightwad34

What in the world would you write anything like this for? Stop making up stories. We are not the audience of say Fox News who is the worst when it comes to pretty much everything. This seriously looks like a headline that belongs in the Onion. Sad indeed.

blue_shift_91
blue_shift_91

lol. why the hell would they sell it off?

to date, the xbox is one of the FEW pieces of Microsoft hardware that an Apple or Google fanatic would own. it's a big thing for MS's long term ecosystem plans. and if nothing else, it brings them a nice stream of revenue from content/services.

deadpen
deadpen

I'm not hating on Sony or microsoft.  Sony will die out, xbox will just fade away, and Nintendo will still be making bank. This is only because of shareholders, that is why CoD is a turd and BF 4 is BF 3 with all the bugs left in that were removed for 3. 


Shareholders decide what your games will be, gamers are tricked to believe what they say matters, but this is smoke up your ass to get your money. Look at all the people that have quit Sony, Microsoft, Gaming companies, and those who have been laid off after a game launches. GS has yet to post as many negative events for Nintendo, they may hate on Nintendo's games but I have more faith in them then any other in the gaming industry right now.


Fable creator just said independent gaming will come to an end soon cause it is just a fad. Though AAA game makers are having trouble getting games out due to employees quitting or the game is tied up in court cases. Only those games that were made over and over with no changes are getting released and that makes money for shareholders.


All I can see is so many developers are quitting and going to independent gaming (and other things non game related) while Nintendo is opening more and more doors for this type of business, they just opened unity. But time will tell.

Blazen702
Blazen702

Wow it's amazing how uneducated sony ponies are. Half talk out their ass and the other half just make shit up to steer views their way. Sad

Nepti
Nepti

Deja Vu or wasn't this a news story a couple months ago? Is the fate of Xbox so 'iffy' that this question needs to be raised each month? Hope not.

mlp071
mlp071

Oh lookie, another Xbox article about nothing... 

They didn't fill in their daily quota of 5+ pointless statements about giving statements later yet?

Kinguard73
Kinguard73

Nokia CEO Stephen Elop, who now runs the Xbox business..... Um ahh now it makes sense. Anyone seen Nokia's handheld attempt? No wonder One is on auto fail...

Odd how Microsoft makes more on corperations since they focused on tablets this gen there is more non corporate than corporate people in the world.

monks-1138
monks-1138

Please stop perpetuating this stupid rumor, Gamespot. 

blackace
blackace

Now maybe the biased trolls will shut up about Stephen Elop selling the XBox brand away from Microsoft. That ain't going to happen folks.

SavageEvil
SavageEvil

Too many silly individuals on here, difference with Playstation brand and the Xbox brand is Playstation(media and entertainment section) is the darling of Sony, next to Sony's finance Playstation is big, in Microsoft the Xbox is not big, Windows is big, royalties from patents is big, Xbox not so big. So when things are up for talks about cutting loose which do you think will be targeted by respected corporations? Notice that Sony is selling off their laptop and PC divisions but not the Playstation division. So put that in your proverbial pipe and smoke it. Companies always aim for the weakest division when it's time to shave some weight and keep money from bleeding.

warhawk-geeby
warhawk-geeby

Heh... Whilst I hope they don't sell Xbox, you can NEVER trust chief execs or those high up.

They just tell you what you want to here. That's all they ever do.

AuronAXE
AuronAXE

haha, I knew it was gonna be Eddie Makuch when I read the title. Gamespot has possibly the worst article writer of all time. Flashy headlines and nothing else.

slduncanlaw
slduncanlaw

Ah. So a company, during the first quarter of sales for a new product, releases a statement reinforcing support and commitment to said new product amid rumors of a brand dump. And this is...news? I mean, that Edward R. Murrow Journalism Award is practically yours.

doggiezilla
doggiezilla

BREAKING NEWS: FACEBOOK BUYS XBOX BRAND!

archav3n
archav3n

What a big joke on M$. They have to rely on consoles for their dying business? Tsk, Tsk, Tsk

hystavito
hystavito

@deadpen  Something I never thought of until just now, the coming future of games as a service could help to bring Nintendo back with the "serious" gamers.  When everything is just streamed, Nintendo will be on equal footing in terms of hardware.


But by then, Nintendo might not be in that space anymore at all.  They might just be selling trading cards or something :).

XIntoTheBlue
XIntoTheBlue

@Blazen702 Both camps who whine about their side do the exact same bull, just like you're doing right now. Give it a rest and stop trying to justify your purchasing decision. You needn't prove it to anybody (except maybe your spouse).

chev9342
chev9342

@Blazen702 And ironically enough, your post is the most uneducated piece of shit I've ever read. 

Blazen702
Blazen702

Yea it's a shame Sony can't get out of junk status and PS losing developers left and right while the Xbox is kicking their ass

19James89
19James89

@blackace Stephen Elop can't sell it, he's not CEO. Nadella is the only person who can sell it as he runs Microsoft.

Blazen702
Blazen702

In sony terms maybe not as profitable but the bottom line for Ms is in the 100 billions and sony around 20 billion so Xbox makes more then sony but has smaller profit percentage compared to other divisions but still higher then Ps

blackace
blackace

@SavageEvil  Sony's PS brand has lost Sony billions. So have their laptop/PC and HDTV divisions. The only reason the PS brand still exists is because it's been hugely popular and they are able to sell a lot of systems and games. Also, this new PS4 will actually start profitting a whole lot sooner then the PS2 and PS3 ever did. The PS3 really put Sony in the hole though. They lost like 8 billion from it. Sony was losing like $150 per system. Where as with the PS4 they are only losing like $15-$20 currently and by this time next year, they will be making a profit. 

blackace
blackace

@doggiezilla LOL!! No. I could see Amazon doing something like this before Facebook. No chance of that happening though.

rasterror
rasterror

@archav3n MS made $8.8 billion last year in profits. Sony lost $1.1 billion. Who's business is dying?

urbansys
urbansys

@archav3n  Wait what??? Windows division is BANKING money. Xbox is also very profitable for MS.


Only one dude said he would sell xbox which he was not even part of MS when he made the comment.

deadpen
deadpen

True, but I hope by Nintendo not going to pax east is because they are working on something big (new system) and see no point in revealing a new Zelda game since it won't come out for the Wii U anyway.

tightwad34
tightwad34

@chev9342 They are just obviously a moronic fanboy waiting to spew ignorance. I'm just glad I have an open mind.

Kinguard73
Kinguard73

@Blazen702 kicking how?

they had to underpriced their system just to compete.

The system is weaker than Sony's.

People don't even like the controller as much as the 360s.

The system is still not in the lead for sells.


kicking their ass requires a greater show than this.

Random_Matt
Random_Matt

@Blazen702  Kicking there ass? Xbox is getting hammered by sony in PS4 sales. Sorry son, Xbox one is a weak piece of shit.

blackace
blackace

@19James89 @blackaceI know that and you know that. Please tell that to the biased trolls who keep thinking this would ever happen.

SavageEvil
SavageEvil

@blackace @SavageEvilLooks like they are off to a great start wouldn't you say? Turn around from the debacle that the crazy Ken with his mad scientist PS3 frankenstein and we have a machine designed by a game developer with input from game developers. Playstation brand is popular and it is more than likely going to be leading the way in profits as the laptop and TV divisions are actually losing money with no out for either of them. There is no equal in Sony for the Playstation brand, so Sony is restructuring everything and chopping off arms that only lose money and have no strategy to make amends. 

PS3 was a massive blackhole, but it did humble those arrogant guys. Not sure what the is with the HDTV division, those things cost too much for just a name alone, you can get the same quality from Samsung or LG for a 1/3rd off the price.

hystavito
hystavito

@deadpen That sounds highly unlikely and if it was so, I'd be mad :).  I think their next big reveal is going to be that health & fitness stuff.

Blazen702
Blazen702

Actually you have it backwards as the xbox one sells at a profit and the Ps4 at a loss try reading the links on the previous post. The controller is the best controller of this gen and they outsold the ps4 in USA and uk since February and the X1 is on par or better then PS4 as side by side you can't tell a difference on cross platform games. Get your head out of Sony's ass.

rasterror
rasterror

And to celebrate they're laying people off. Oh, wait.

Blazen702
Blazen702

You're kinda quiet now I see. Hmm I guess the truth was all it took to shut you up.

Blazen702
Blazen702

Wow you are an idiot. Blinded by sony fanboy lies.

Kinguard73
Kinguard73

@Blazen702 See Blazen we actually read the numbers and it's 90% confirmed of Sony's sells so that means less. We read so please stop sounding desperate ok? you make the Sony fanbois giggle at you and make the One's fans embarrassed you trying to defend them.

Blazen702
Blazen702

Wow I guess I know what's on your mind. I don't swing your way, sorry

johnnycontardo
johnnycontardo

@Blazen702  



Look everyone!


Two fanboys are arguing against one another!


You guys aren't gonna start sucking each other's dicks, are ya?

Blazen702
Blazen702

The sales figures say otherwise

Random_Matt
Random_Matt

@Blazen702  No, USA only. Xbox one does not sell well in the UK, i know a number of ex managers of Game stores who say the same.

Blazen702
Blazen702

Typical sony fanboy with their head way up Sony's ass. X1 is in a way better position financially and has outsold the PS4 in software sales by over $100 million and dollar for dollar out paces the PS4 in console sales. The xbox one is the top selling console since February 18 in the USA and uk. Nice try.

SavageEvil
SavageEvil

@blackace @19James89Nadella might have some say, but ultimately it's the shareholders who make that decision, shareholders are the one's who voted him in and if the majority of them want the Xbox Brand dissolved, sold or absorbed into the company, not much he can do unless he's like to lose his job.

ramze33
ramze33

@Barighm @SavageEvil  Samsung's is such garbage, him never buying anything from them again, unless they manage to have a BIG turnaround in quality. Hell, my Ex had a 40 inch LCD TV, condensers broke after 3 years LOL. After that, my dad had his, used it 3-4 years, like 2 times a week, inverters fried, had to repair, again. Then, Blu ray Drive broke down, didn't bother. My ex got a computer screen, broke down after like 4 years, the list goes on, it's insane, such bad components in there. Him not saying Sony is the Bomb, but saying Samsung is good is downright wrong. In my experience, at least.

Barighm
Barighm

@SavageEvil Well, Sony was a big name in quality for the longest time, but yeah, the reports I see these days say Samsung is just as good, sometimes better, than Sony.