Bobby Kotick set to leave Activision Blizzard next week

Bobby Kotick set to leave Activision Blizzard next week
Images via Xbox | Activision Blizzard

Written by 

Joshua Boyles

Published 

20th Dec 2023 17:58

Activision Blizzard CEO, Bobby Kotick, is set to step down from his role next week, as detailed in an internal memo from Phil Spencer, CEO of Microsoft Gaming [via The Verge].

This news arrives following the long and arduous process of Xbox acquiring Activision Blizzard over the last two years. While the board at Activision Blizzard previously voted to keep Kotick in his position as CEO, he's officially set to leave the company on December 29th, ahead of the new year.

Phil Spencer on Kotick's departure

Phil Spencer, CEO of Microsoft Gaming
Click to enlarge

Spencer thanked Kotick for his 32 years of service to Activision Blizzard, saying, "I’d like to thank Bobby—for his invaluable contributions to this industry, his partnership in closing the Activision Blizzard acquisition and his collaboration following the close—and I wish him and his family the very best in his next chapter."

Kotick's role at Activision Blizzard was a controversial one, especially in the years leading up to Microsoft's acquisition of the company. He previously came under fire over an extremely high pay package in 2021, and similarly high stock bonuses in 2022 - pills that become even harder to swallow given the swathes of Games Industry layoffs in 2023.

He was also at the helm of Activision Blizzard when it was sued for nurturing a 'frat boy' culture in the workplace, in which women at the company were allegedly subject to sexual harassment, unequal pay and opportunities. This was later settled with California's Civil Rights Department for a fee of $50 million.

What else is changing at Activision Blizzard?

Activision Blizzard signs
Click to enlarge

Now that the deal is set in stone and the two gaming giants fold into one another, management roles are changing hands across the board. Just a few months ago, Sarah Bond was promoted to president of Xbox, while Matt Booty took over as the president of game content and studios.

Booty is set to have several of Activision Blizzard's higher-ups report to him under the new management structure, including the Presidents of Activision Publishing, Blizzard Entertainment, and King.

Spencer caveats these changes by saying that "The leadership teams for Activision Publishing, Blizzard and King will remain in place, with no changes to the structure of how the studios and business units are run."

How these management changes and the acquisition as a whole will affect the consumer remains to be seen. Both Xbox and Activision Blizzard have confirmed that neither Diablo nor Call of Duty will make their way to Xbox Game Pass anytime soon, which is perhaps the outcome that most gamers are looking forward to.

For more developments in the Xbox and Activision Blizzard acquisition saga, keep reading GGRecon.

Joshua Boyles
About the author
Joshua Boyles
Joshua is the Guides Editor at GGRecon. After graduating with a BA (Hons) degree in Broadcast Journalism, he previously wrote for publications such as FragHero and GameByte. You can often find him diving deep into fantasy RPGs such as Skyrim and The Witcher, or tearing it up in Call of Duty and Battlefield. He's also often spotted hiking in the wilderness, usually blasting Arctic Monkeys.
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