Bloomberg reviews that the layoffs affected lower than 2% of the corporate’s staff — two % interprets roughly to 190 staff. Fifty of these staff labored in Activision’s esports division. U.S. employees laid off will obtain a minimal of 90 days of severance and well being advantages for as much as a yr, in response to Bloomberg, and every worker laid off was given $200 in reward playing cards to Battle.web, which is the corporate’s on-line online game storefront.Sports Business Journal reviews that Activision govt, Tony Petitti, stated the 50 esports-specific layoffs are a results of the corporate’s try at reinventing its esports division amidst the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic. Petitti instructed SBJ that the corporate is planning for a future the place Activision’s esports look totally different and are “much less depending on reside occasions.”
Activision stated the workers laid off will obtain “correct severance packages,” in response to SBJ, and that regardless of the corporate’s shift in its esports focus, which closely facilities on the Overwatch League and the Name of Obligation League, it would not plan to maneuver away fully from reside occasions. Each the Overwatch League and the Name of Obligation League shifted from reside in-person occasions to online-only occasions throughout the previous yr and SBJ reviews that it is attainable Activision might proceed down this route for future occasions.
Petitti stated the layoffs are partly due to a necessity to scale back prices and one other half a way to unlock assets to reallocate to different areas of the corporate, but it surely’s necessary to notice that he was talking to SBJ concerning the 50 esports layoffs — Pettiti did not communicate to SBJ concerning the different layoffs Bloomberg reported as having occurred. He stated the corporate “realized lots final yr when it comes to how the leagues might be structured for on-line play” and that it’s going to “look to hold ahead the most effective practices from that.”“By way of timing, it is a response to the realities of how the leagues are enjoying and what assets we have to allocate to greatest serve the league, house owners, groups, and followers,” Petitti stated.
An Activision spokesperson instructed Bloomberg that “gamers are more and more selecting to attach with our video games digitally and the e-sports workforce, very like conventional sports activities, leisure, and broadcasting industries, has needed to adapt its enterprise as a result of affect the pandemic has had on reside occasions.”
That is the corporate’s second giant spherical of layoffs up to now few years. Activision-Blizzard laid off nearly 800 employees back in March of 2019, together with 209 employees from Blizzard.
Wesley LeBlanc is a contract information author and information maker for IGN. You possibly can comply with him on Twitter @LeBlancWes.