Microsoft joins a growing number of technology companies whose employees have been reduced from the beginning of 2024. The Redmond-based technology giant, which recently reached a market value of $3 trillion, has officially announced the immediate layoff of 1,900 employees at its Activision. Blizzard and Xbox divisions. The layoffs will take effect this week.
These layoffs, which Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer confirmed in an internal memo, represent an 8-9 percent reduction in the company’s gaming division’s total workforce, which currently employs a total of 22,000 people.
Spencer says this is part of a “strategic alignment” and “plan for a sustainable cost structure” following the acquisition of Activision Blizzard three months ago. Spencer added: “Together we’ve set priorities, identified overlaps and made sure we’re all aligned on the best growth opportunities.”
Spencer further claimed that the company will pay severance benefits as per the applicable local labor laws to the affected employees and will convey the same soon.
In addition to the layoffs, Blizzard president Mike Ybarra is also leaving the tech giant. “As many of you know, Mike previously worked for over 20 years at Microsoft. Now that he’s seen the acquisition as the head of Blizzard, he’s decided to leave the company,” said Matt Booty, Microsoft’s director of game content and studios.
However, Microsoft has joined tech giants like Google, Amazon, Duolingo and TikTok in implementing workforce reductions in 2024, all within a short period of around 20-25 days. Microsoft is taking action shortly after completing its $68.7 billion purchase of Activision Blizzard.