Activision CEO Bobby Kotick will reportedly leave the company after Microsoft acquisition closes
Microsoftis buying "Call of Duty" publisher Activision in a $68.7 billion all-cash deal.
- As part of the deal,
ActivisionCEO Bobby Kotickis reportedly out.
Microsoft is buying Activision, the major video game publisher behind the "Call of Duty" franchise, in an all-cash deal valued at around $68.7 billion.
It's Microsoft's largest ever acquisition, and the largest video game acquisition in history.
Microsoft will acquire a huge selection of intellectual property and game development resources: Game franchises like "Call of Duty," "World of Warcraft," and "Candy Crush," in addition to major game studios like Blizzard
One employee who apparently won't be joining Microsoft, though, is embattled Activision CEO Bobby Kotick: He's expected to leave the company once the deal closes, according to sources who spoke with the Wall Street Journal.
Those sources said that both Microsoft and Activision have agreed that Kotick "will depart once the deal closes," which could take anywhere from 12 to 18 months.
That's in stark contrast to what Microsoft said in its press release on Tuesday morning.
"Bobby Kotick will continue to serve as CEO of Activision Blizzard," the release said, "and he and his team will maintain their focus on driving efforts to further strengthen the company's culture and accelerate business growth. Once the deal closes, the
Kotick reportedly knew for years about a variety of claims of sexual harassment and rape at his company.
An investigation by the Wall Street Journal detailed several specific examples of harassment and rape at Activision. Kotick was not only aware of those claims but, in a least one instance, reportedly intervened to keep a male staffer who was accused of sexual harassment despite the company's human resources department recommending he be fired.
At the time,
"We believe it's critical for Activision Blizzard to drive forward on its renewed cultural commitments," Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said. "We are supportive of the goals and the work Activision Blizzard is doing. And we also recognize that after the close, we will have significant work to do in order to continue to build a culture where everyone can do their best work."
Neither Activision nor Microsoft representatives responded immediately to a request for comment.
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