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Microsoft to cut 1,900 jobs in gaming division

Activision Blizzard logo on a phone screen with the background of the Call of Duty

Microsoft has announced 1,900 job cuts in its gaming division, particularly at newly acquired Activision Blizzard.

The cuts will also affect employees from Xbox and Zenimax.

In a memo distributed to employees on Thursday morning, Phil Spencer, CEO of Microsoft Gaming, addressed the staff.

He said it has been over three months since the teams from Activision, Blizzard, and King became part of Microsoft.

He added As they progress into 2024, the combined leadership of Microsoft Gaming and Activision Blizzard is focusing on developing a strategy and execution plan with a cost structure that supports their expanding business.

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This involves setting priorities, identifying overlapping areas, and aligning on the best growth opportunities.

He said, as a result of this strategic alignment, they had to make the difficult choice to downsize their gaming workforce by about 1,900 positions out of the 22,000-strong team.

He assured full support to those impacted during this transition, including severance benefits in line with local employment laws.

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He also spoke of the future, focusing on plans to continue investing in areas that will expand their business.

Despite the challenges, he expressed confidence in the team's ability to create and cultivate games, stories, and worlds that unite players.

Blizzard president Mike Ybarra, a former Microsoft employee of over 20 years, announced his departure from the company on X.

The acquisition of Activision Blizzard by Microsoft, a deal challenged by regulators in the United States and United Kingdom, was finalized in October 2023 after a 21-month negotiation process.

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