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Microsoft Lays Off 1,900 Activision Blizzard and Xbox Employees

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The tech layoff wave continues to crash on the industry and Thursday marked another grim day in the industry as Microsoft is laying off 1,900 employees at Activision Blizzard and Xbox this week, according to The Verge.

Per the report, which cites an internal memo, Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer confirmed the layoffs:

“It’s been a little over three months since the Activision, Blizzard, and King teams joined Microsoft. As we move forward in 2024, the leadership of Microsoft Gaming and Activision Blizzard is committed to aligning on a strategy and an execution plan with a sustainable cost structure that will support the whole of our growing business. Together, we’ve set priorities, identified areas of overlap, and ensured that we’re all aligned on the best opportunities for growth.

As part of this process, we have made the painful decision to reduce the size of our gaming workforce by approximately 1900 roles out of the 22,000 people on our team. The Gaming Leadership Team and I are committed to navigating this process as thoughtfully as possible. The people who are directly impacted by these reductions have all played an important part in the success of Activision Blizzard, ZeniMax and the Xbox teams, and they should be proud of everything they’ve accomplished here. We are grateful for all of the creativity, passion and dedication they have brought to our games, our players and our colleagues. We will provide our full support to those who are impacted during the transition, including severance benefits informed by local employment laws. Those whose roles will be impacted will be notified, and we ask that you please treat your departing colleagues with the respect and compassion that is consistent with our values.

Looking ahead, we’ll continue to invest in areas that will grow our business and support our strategy of bringing more games to more players around the world. Although this is a difficult moment for our team, I’m as confident as ever in your ability to create and nurture the games, stories and worlds that bring players together.

Phil”

In a another major departure, Blizzard president Mike Ybarra has decided to leave the company in the wake of the news. Microsoft plans to name a new Blizzard president next week, per the report.

As many of you know, Mike previously spent more than 20 years at Microsoft. Now that he has seen the acquisition through as Blizzard’s president, he has decided to leave the company” Matt Booty, Microsoft’s game content and studios president said within an internal memo.

Additionally, Allen Adham, Blizzard’s chief design officer, is also departing the company, as also confirmed by Booty.

“As one of Blizzard’s cofounders, Allen has had a broad impact on all of Blizzard’s games. His influence will be felt for years to come, both directly and indirectly as Allen plans to continue mentoring young designers across the industry,” he said.

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