While games like Call of Duty: Black Ops 4 rake in billions of dollars for Activision, it seems that’s not enough to stave off layoffs at the mega-publisher. During its quarterly earnings call today, the publisher confirmed that a good chunk of its workforce has been laid off.
The Activision Blizzard layoffs are marked at eight percent, which puts it at 775 employees. This move is part of a restructuring where the studio will “de-prioritize” disappointing projects. Further reporting by Kotaku mentions that the branches hit the hardest include Blizzard’s non-game development staff such as eSports and publishing. Activision employees will be focusing on “key franchises” moving forward which include Call of Duty, Cany Crush Saga, Overwatch, Warcraft, Hearthstone, and Diablo.
Kotaku has managed to obtain a note from Blizzard president J. Allen Brack, which confirms the layoffs, and promised a “comprehensive severance package.”
“Over the last few years, many of our non-development teams expanded to support various needs. Currently staffing levels on some teams are out of proportion with our current release slate. This means we need to scale down some areas of our organization. I’m sorry to share that we will be parting ways with some of our colleagues in the U.S. today. In our regional offices, we anticipate similar evaluations, subject to local requirements.”
According to Activision CEO Bobby Kotick, the publisher’s financial results for 2018 “were the best” in the publisher’s history, though it still failed to realize their “full potential.”
“While our financial results for 2018 were the best in our history, we didn’t realize our full potential. To help us reach our full potential, we have made a number of important leadership changes. These changes should enable us to achieve the many opportunities our industry affords us, especially with our powerful owned franchises, our strong commercial capabilities, our direct digital connections to hundreds of millions of players, and our extraordinarily talented employees.”
We wish everyone affected the best of luck, and hope they find new jobs soon.