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Activision Has Big Layoffs Despite Surpassing Financial Targets

Illustration for article titled Activision Has Big Layoffs Despite Surpassing Financial Targets

Activision Publishing laid off a number of employees across several companies this week, Kotaku has learned. The publisher let go of staff at Infinity Ward, Beenox, and other internal studios as well as their corporate office, according to sources, despite saying yesterday that they had surpassed their revenue targets for 2016.

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From what we’ve heard, Activision Publishing laid off 5% of their workforce, although the company’s other divisions, like Blizzard Entertainment and MLG, were not affected. Activision Publishing, which is a division of Activision-Blizzard, comprises the publisher’s corporate headquarters in Santa Monica as well as a number of studios across North America, including Infinity Ward, Beenox, and Treyarch.

The layoffs, which followed a week of rumors among Activision staff, landed alongside yesterday’s Q4 2016 earnings call, during which Activision CEO Eric Hirshberg was candid about the publisher’s disappointment with Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare. Infinity Ward, developers of Infinite Warfare, laid off around 20 people according to a source.

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Activision also reported a “better-than-expected and record fourth-quarter.” Still, the publisher’s slate for 2017 is very slim, with only Destiny 2 and a new Call of Duty planned for this year according to yesterday’s call.

When reached by Kotaku, Activision sent over this statement: “Activision Publishing is realigning our resources to support our upcoming slate and adapt to the accelerating transition to digital, including opportunities for digital add-on content.”

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DISCUSSION

That statement is missing a couple instances of ‘innovative’, ‘disrupt’, and ‘engagement’, but with a few tweaks I think that kid will be ready for his SXSW speech.

Bullshit corporate-speak aside, I’m willing to bet money that none of the people fired were in upper management positions, and all the money saved off labour costs are going straight into those guys’ pockets for a job well done. “Thanks for the crunch time, unpaid OT, and all the family events you missed. Now pack your shit and tell the kids to get used to soup while you look for another job.”

Sorry, my morning latte hasn’t kicked in yet and I’m a sourpuss right now. Stuff like this gets me fired up.