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Sources: Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick to Leave After Microsoft Acquisition Closes

Sources: Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick to Leave After Microsoft Acquisition Closes - News

by William D'Angelo , posted on 18 January 2022 / 2,182 Views

Microsoft has changed the gaming landscape with its announcement it is acquiring Activision Blizzard in a deal worth $68.7 billion. This is the by far the biggest acquisition in video game history. Take-Two's recent acquisition of Zynga comes in second with a deal worth $12.7 billion. 

The press release from Microsoft stated Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick will remain as CEO. However, it does state that once the deal closes the Activision Blizzard business will report directly to the head of Xbox Phil Spencer.

"Bobby Kotick will continue to serve as CEO of Activision Blizzard, and he and his team will maintain their focus on driving efforts to further strengthen the company’s culture and accelerate business growth," reads the statement. "Once the deal closes, the Activision Blizzard business will report to Phil Spencer, CEO, Microsoft Gaming."

Sources have told The Wall Street Journal that once the deal closes and Activision Blizzard is officially part of Microsoft and Xbox, Kotick will leave the company.

Until the deal is finalized, no one at Microsoft or Activision Blizzard can say anything about future plans. Whether it is if Kotick will step down or what games will become Xbox console exclusives. 

Activision Blizzard has fired or pushed out over three dozen employees for workplace misconduct since last July when it was sued by the California Department of Fair Employment.

The gaming giant has confirmed 37 employees have "exited" the company and another 44 have been disciplined as the investigations over the allegations of misconduct.

It was revealed last November Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick knew for years about the sexual misconduct allegations at the gaming giant. The head of Xbox Phil Spencer also in an email to Xbox employees said Xbox is "evaluating all aspects of our relationship" with Activision Blizzard. He and the gaming leadership team are "disturbed and deeply troubled by the horrific events and actions" at the publisher.


A life-long and avid gamer, William D'Angelo was first introduced to VGChartz in 2007. After years of supporting the site, he was brought on in 2010 as a junior analyst, working his way up to lead analyst in 2012. He has expanded his involvement in the gaming community by producing content on his own YouTube channel and Twitch channel dedicated to gaming Let's Plays and tutorials. You can contact the author at wdangelo@vgchartz.com or on Twitter @TrunksWD.


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19 Comments
thevideogameninja (on 18 January 2022)

Don't let the door hit you on the way out!

-VIDEOGAME FIRING NINJA APPROVED-

  • +10
Azzanation (on 18 January 2022)

He has fallen, not much else he can do now except retire. To think that Take Two's Acquisition of Zynga wouldn't be topped let alone in the same month.

  • +8
gtotheunit91 (on 18 January 2022)

To think, this was the only way to get rid of him.

  • +5
JEMC (on 18 January 2022)

That may be the best/only good thing about this whole acquisition.

  • +5
TallSilhouette (on 18 January 2022)

With the industry's biggest golden parachute, I'd wager.

  • +4
Imaginedvl TallSilhouette (on 18 January 2022)

Yah that landing is going to hurt ahah ;-) Seriously, this guy is laughing off right now with all the money he is going to make in the next year.

  • +2
2zosteven (on 18 January 2022)

it took money to get him out, all this craziness and now hes even richer.

  • +3
CaptainExplosion 2zosteven (on 18 January 2022)

Rich people really do cheat at life. -_-

  • +1
Hynad (on 19 January 2022)

I much prefer these studios to be under a giant like MS than under Kotick. But I’d much prefer these giants to remain "independent" entities than become consolidated into fewer and fewer monopolistic driven ones.

  • +2
scrapking (on 18 January 2022)

Not only the biggest video game industry deal of all time, but the biggest all-cash acquisition in business history. Most deals in the tens of billions are done via issuing new stock, assuming the target company's debt for them, etc. This one was just 'write a cheque'. Unreal.

  • +2
Kakadu18 (on 18 January 2022)

You won't be missed.

  • +1
VAMatt (on 18 January 2022)

Of course he is leaving. There's no way that a guy like that is gonna take a job where he has a real boss.

  • +1
CaptainExplosion (on 18 January 2022)

You won't be missed, you irredeemable piece of shit.

  • +1
2zosteven CaptainExplosion (on 18 January 2022)

POS about to buy an island. build his own paradise, mansion, airport, yacht, pools, women everywhere and a mountain of cocaine.

  • +4
Kakadu18 2zosteven (on 18 January 2022)

This guy is already swimming in cocaine I bet. He'll probably get a heart attack from it one day and die.

  • +2
CaptainExplosion Kakadu18 (on 19 January 2022)

How do you have a heart attack when you're heartless?

  • 0
axumblade (on 18 January 2022)

Well...some positive news.

  • +1
Hiku (on 19 January 2022)

He'll probably be out, as I don't imagine MS want to keep him. And from the sound of it, they've already discussed his future, because when WSJ asked if he would remain as CEO after the deal closes, he didn't say, but instead said "Post close, I will be available if needed". I'm sure he knows the answer to that question as they would have no doubt discussed it before they finalized the agreement. Not that he cares much, he's already a billionaire and will get more money for being let go. But at least he can't cause any more damage to the people of this company.

  • 0
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