According to a company letter by Activision Blizzard, the company will be purchased by Microsoft Corporation. The company announced its plan to buy Activision Blizzard for $95 per share — a total deal of $68.7 billion. The move comes after numerous reports of discrimination and sexual misconduct against Activision Blizzard last year. The deal is the largest acquisition in Microsoft's history.
The move comes after a year of litigation and sexual misconduct allegations against Activision Blizzard. Beginning last July, the California's Department of Fair Employment and Housing filed a lawsuit against the company, accusing them of discrimination against its female workers and encouraging a toxic work culture. In a report by the Wall Street Journal, the company has attempted to address the concerns by firing or forcing out 37 Activision Blizzard employees, with an additional 44 being disciplined.
Company CEO Bobby Kotick will remain in his position in spite of calls for resignation, and will work under Microsoft Gaming chief Phil Spencer. In the company letter announcing the move, Kotick stated "Microsoft also will support our journey to further strengthen our culture. Satya Nadella, Microsoft’s CEO, has been a passionate advocate for caring as the currency of leadership. Inspiring people through empathy is a powerful motivator, and one we embrace as we renew our resolve – and in the work we are now doing – to set a new standard for a welcoming and inclusive workplace culture."
According to a report by Engadget, the purchase is expected to close in late 2023 — if Activision Blizzard shareholders and regulators approve the move. Leadership in both companies have approved the deal. The purchase includes ownership of mobile games developer King.com Limited — expanding Microsoft presence in this space. Past acquisitions from Microsoft have included Minecraft devloper Mojang Studios, as well as Bethesda Softworks.
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