Activision Blizzard lays off 800 employees after record revenue in 2018

Brittany A. Roston - Feb 12, 2019, 5:48pm CST
Activision Blizzard lays off 800 employees after record revenue in 2018

In a call with investors today, Activision Blizzard revealed that it has laid off 8-percent of its employees, which works out to around 800 jobs. Company president Collister Johnson cited “weaker than anticipated retail demand,” and it was also revealed that Blizzard doesn’t have any major game releases planned for this year fiscal year. The business decision is despite a record net revenue in 2018.

Under this restructuring, Activision Blizzard will shift its focus to its major franchises, including Call of Duty, Overwatch, and Diablo. The new round of layoffs involved “non-development roles,” and the company plans to increase its development roles.

The disclosure follows a report earlier this month that claimed Activision Blizzard was gearing up to cut hundreds of jobs due to a decline in sales. Blizzard released a statement today on the news, stating that it needs to “reorganize some of our non-development teams” to meet its future goals, which include both unannounced projects and its existing game franchises.

It appears the layoffs are centered in North America. The company called the layoffs “extremely difficult,” revealing that laid off employees will be given a severance package that includes continued benefits, extra pay, and support for finding new jobs. In regards to future projects, Blizzard said, “We look forward to sharing everything with you when it’s ready.”

Despite the layoffs, Activision Blizzard reported record revenues during its 2018 fiscal year, raking in $7.26 billion over the $7.16 billion it made in its 2017 fiscal year. The revenue didn’t meet company expectations, however, failing to bring the company to its “full potential,” CEO Bobby Kotick said during the investor call.

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