Yes, you read that right. CNBC recently uncovered that Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick has not one but two companies through which he quietly donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to political campaigns.
The two companies, 807080A LLC and Norgate LLC, were both found detailed in FEC filings, the former listed under the same California address as Kotick’s 803011 Foundation and the latter tied to a location that’s just one minute away on foot. According to Campaign Legal Center, a government watchdog group, Norgate LLC also shares a personal mailbox with Kotick and his foundation.
“[807080A LLC] has been around since 2008 and manages some of Mr. Kotick’s investments,” Kotick rep Mark Herr told CNBC via email earlier this week. “Mr. Kotick contributes to Democratic and Republican candidates and is supporting David McCormick because he is a very close friend.”
Kotick’s lawyer denied that the corporations are secret given that “they are legitimate limited liability corporations lawfully incorporated” and information on them “is publicly available.”
“Mr. Kotick established these corporations,” his lawyer said, “for the banal, legitimate, and completely lawful purpose of managing his investments.”
CNBC’s reporting says Kotick used these two companies to donate upwards of $600,000 to political action committees supporting Republican candidates such as Kentucky senator Mitch McConnell—who, it cannot be overstated, is one of the cruelest politicians in the United States—and Dave McCormick, a former business exec currently running for Senate in Pennsylvania’s GOP primary. The magnitude of these particular contributions is much larger than the individual contributions that Kotrick made to both Republicans and centrist Democrats in his own name.
Kotick’s lawyer said “he has donated roughly the same amount to democratic political candidates as he has to republican political candidates.”
Despite a long and illustrious career of scummy behavior, Kotick’s public standing only recently started to plummet due to reports of Activision Blizzard’s widespread culture of sexual harassment and generally shitty behavior towards female employees. Reports indicate Kotick himself was also responsible for fostering this environment. That he was giving more money to absolute chuds like McConnell than previously assumed doesn’t come as much of a surprise.
The fun part of this story is that this is just something rich people do. Like, all the time. They set up these shady organizations that exist only on paper to cover their tracks when, say, helping prop up evil politicians. And it’s not only allowed but encouraged by our current economic system. As always, it’s a big club and you ain’t in it.
Kotick is expected to step down from his position at Activision Blizzard following its impending $68.7 billion acquisition by Microsoft. Both the Microsoft deal and his resignation stand to add hundreds of millions more dollars to his already inconceivable, undeserved wealth.
Editor’s Note 02/18/2022, 12:31 p.m. ET: This story has been updated to incorporate statements sent to Kotaku by Bobby Kotick’s attorney after publication.