Activision Blizzard begins to lay off 8% of its workforce

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Activision Blizzard is laying off non-developers but will increase its number of employed developers by 20%.

Activision Blizzard has started to lay off 8% of its total workforce, new reports today suggest.

In an earnings call earlier today, the publisher confirmed will layoff 8% of its total workforce, which equates to 800 people from a pool of 9,600. At the moment, Esports and publishing departments have taken the biggest hits.

“Over the last few years, many of our non-development teams expanded to support various needs,” Blizzard President, J. Allen Brack, wrote in a letter obtained by Kotaku.

“Currently staffing levels on some teams are out of proportion with our current release slate. This means we need to scale down some areas of our organisation. I’m sorry to share that we will be parting ways with some of our colleagues in the U.S. today. In our regional offices, we anticipate similar evaluations, subject to local requirements.”

Brack’s letter continued to state that laid off employees would receive “a comprehensive severance package,” alongside continued health benefits, job placement assistance and career coaching.

A further statement by Activision Blizzard says it will increase development, adding 20% more developers in 2019.

“In 2019, the company will increase development investment in its biggest franchise, enabling teams to accelerate the pace and quality of content for their communities and supporting a number of new product initiatives,” the statement reads.

“The number of developers working on Call of Duty, Candy Crush, Overwatch, Warcraft, Hearthstone and Diablo in aggregate will increase approximately 20% over the course of 2019. The company will fund this greater investment by de-prioritizing initiatives that are not meeting expectations and reducing non-development and administrative-related costs across the business.”

Our best wishes to those impacted by Activision Blizzard’s layoffs.