Skip to main content

Bobby Kotick to continue as Activision Blizzard CEO until the end of 2023

CEO seems set for departure afterwards
  • Author:
  • Publish date:

Controversial Activision Blizzard King CEO Bobby Kotick will remain at the company’s helm until the end of 2023 to help with the gaming giant’s transition under Microsoft’s umbrella, reporting to Xbox chief Phil Spencer. Afterwards, it seems, there will no longer be a place for him at the company he’s been leading for 33 years.

Kotick sent an email to all employees at Activision Blizzard King about its finalized acquisition by Microsoft, in which he stated: “I have long said that I am fully committed to helping with the transition. Phil has asked me to stay on as CEO of ABK, reporting to him, and we have agreed that I will do that through the end of 2023. We both look forward to working together on a smooth integration for our teams and players.”

Bobby Kotick, CEO of Activision Blizzard King.

Bobby Kotick has led Activision for 33 years. This one looks to be his last.

While it’s not been directly spelled out that Kotick will leave the company on January 1, 2024, his specific reference to the end of the year suggests that he’ll depart. While Activision Blizzard King did well financially under Kotick’s leadership, his aegis also saw several scandals as well as an erosion of what fans used to call the Blizzard magic. His push for live-service aspects and more monetization has been keenly felt by the player base.

“Brian and I couldn’t be more excited for the next chapter for ABK,” Kotick concluded his email. “We now join one of the most successful global companies, poised for unprecedented opportunities to connect the world through our games. As a part of Microsoft, we will be even better, together.”

“Together, we’ll create new worlds and stories, bring your favorite games to more places so more players can join in, and we’ll engage with and delight players in new, innovative ways in the places they love to play including mobile, cloud streaming and more,” Phil Spencer wrote in his own statement addressing players with a similar sentiment.

Microsoft closed the Activision Blizzard King deal today after receiving final approval from the UK’s Competition and Market Authority (CMA) in the morning. The company had to fight tooth and nail for this merger to go through, as the CMA initially blocked the move and it had to deal with a legal challenge by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).