It appears that nearly half of the 1,900 job cuts recently announced by Microsoft will affect Activision Blizzard employees in California. The Call of Duty maker will lay off a total of 899 workers next month.
Information about the upcoming layoffs at Activision Blizzard was first reported by What Layoff?, an account that tracks layoffs at different companies in real time.
According to a Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) notice filed with the state of California, all the cuts will be made on March 30. When looking at the addresses in the full WARN report, employees in the following divisions will be affected:
- Blizzard Entertainment (WoW, Diablo, Overwatch) — 479 employees;
- Toys For Bob (Skylanders, Crash Bandicoot and Spyro remasters) — 86 employees;
- Sledgehammer Games (Call of Duty) — 76 employees;
- Infinity Ward (Call of Duty) — 49 employees.
Activision will also lay off 79 workers at its corporate Santa Monica headquarters and 130 employees at its publishing division.
It is worth noting that the company has divisions in other US cities, as well as countries like the UK, Canada, Sweden, Poland, and Australia. But it is unclear how many jobs, if any, will be cut at those offices.
This is part of the broader layoffs at Microsoft announced on January 25. “We have made the painful decision to reduce the size of our gaming workforce by approximately 1900 roles out of the 22,000 people on our team,” Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer said at the time.
Blizzard co-founder Allen Adham also announced his departure last month, alongside the studio’s president Mike Ybarra. Call of Duty general manager Johanna Faries took on the role on February 5.
The mass layoffs occurred just three months after Micorosft closed the Activision Blizzard acquisition followed its lengthy legal battle with regulators in the US and Europe. In October 2023, Microsoft also reorganized Xbox leadership, with Sarah Bond being promoted to president of Xbox and Matt Booty becoming president of Game Content and Studios to oversee the work of Bethesda, ZeniMax, and Activision Blizzard.
Microsoft wasn’t the only company to recently announce mass layoffs. In January, about 6,000 games industry workers lost their jobs across Riot Games, Unity, Embracer Group, and more (via Game Industry Layoffs). Last month alone there were roughly as many job cuts as there were in the first eight months of 2023.