Activision-Blizzard lays off more support staff, this time in the Asia-Pacific region

    
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Activision-Blizzard lays off more support staff, this time in the Asia-Pacific region

(This piece has been updated with Blizzard’s confirmation and an updated headcount of those affected.)

UK publication MCV/Develop is reporting today that the global redundancies for Activision-Blizzard are continuing. According to MCV’s unnamed insider source, over 100 around 30 employees in the Asia-Pacific region are seeing staffing impacts to their offices, specifically affecting employees who work in marketing, PR, publishing, customer care, and localization.

When asked for a reason behind the office closures, the source said that the company was transitioning its non-development workforce to a full outsourcing setup, with the source quoted as saying, “Activision’s part of the company doesn’t believe in community management and fandom. They think their games sell themselves. They’d rather pop a couple of millions on having Beyonce tweet about CoD than hire a bunch of good people.”

This news follows additional global layoffs such as the shutdown of an office in Versailles, France, which prompted EU unions to urge other Blizzard employees in France to go on strike. And of course, we can’t forget the mass of layoffs after ActiBlizz posted record profits in 2019. Meanwhile in the US, Blizzard employees have been fighting for fair pay, going so far as to organize behind the scenes.

As for Activision-Blizzard, readers will recall that the company released its third quarter 2020 financials just a few weeks ago, admitting that overall revenue held steady and Blizzard’s revenues actually increased, though Blizzard also lost 2M monthly active users. At the same time, Bobby Kotick had told GamesBeat that “the company needs to hire more than 2,000 people to meet its production demands” on top of the 10,000 employees the company employs currently.

As of this writing, Blizzard hasn’t issued a statement confirming the layoffs yet; assuming the claim is proven true, we extend our condolences to the rank-and-file workers affected by the closures.

source: MCV/Develop UK via Gamasutra, thanks to Gwen for the tip!
Update
MCV/Develop received a response from Blizzard effectively confirming layoffs, which it characterizes as “centraliz[ing] some roles” in Australia. However, Blizzard says it’s closer to 30 people affected and that the layoffs will not affect CS and localization after all; it did not confirm that any offices are actually being closed (but it also didn’t say none were).

“We’ve been exploring how we might best integrate our capabilities across the business and be efficient as we evolve to meet growth opportunities and stay competitive in Asia Pacific. To that end, we have begun conversations with employees regarding a plan to centralize some roles across the region in our Sydney office. Decisions of this nature are never easy and supporting our employees through this process is our number one priority.”

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Bluxwave

I sent in two tickets to sort a issue out….

I was threatened with a permaban of my 15 year old account…..

Blizz employees used to talk to you in the chat window and were nice people.

Now they are not. and give generic pre-written responses.

edit: oh im in australia

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McGuffn

Bobby Kotick will keep a printout of this story in his pocket so he can impress women.

Turing fail
Reader
Turing fail

No personal experience, but I’d think prostitutes would find cash more impressive… Bobby just looks like he needs the cash shop for companions?

Reader
Dug From The Earth

Hilariously enough, I JUST had this conversation with a blizzard CSR on the support forum

Apparently Blizzards own employees at risk are willing to lie about it.

unknown.png
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Bruno Brito

You do what you can to keep your job.

Turing fail
Reader
Turing fail

Good to know that Activision Blizzard’s CEO, Bobby Kotick, shares in the sacrifices required in these tough economic times, taking a whopping compensation cut from $31 M for 2018 down to just $30.1 M for 2019. Hopefully Bobby gets what he deserves for 2020…

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Bryan Cole

Anyone here wish Blizzard would buy itself back the same way Bungie did when it broke away from Activision? One can only hope!

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Bruno Brito

No. Blizzard was always a company that had owners. It was owned by Vivendi before Activision. Whatever this dream that a “real” Blizzard existed, is not true. They might have had passionate leadership, but they were always pulling these garbage with their rank-and-file, we are just aware now.

Bree Royce
Staff
Bree Royce

We’ve updated with Blizzard’s statement — apparently they wouldn’t say offices are closing, but they confirmed around 30 redundancies in Australia and that the layoffs are touching teams other than CS and localization.

dafino
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dafino

I have never been exposed to people’s livelihoods being referred to as redundancies. I don’t like that terminology.

Reader
Bruno Brito

So, support quality will suffer for asian players in the wake of Shadowlands launching?

Greeeeeeat.

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Loopy

Keeping winning those community points, ActiBlizz!

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Kickstarter Donor
Greaterdivinity

“We’ve lost control of the narrative to our community…what’s our solution?”

“FIRE COMMUNICATIONS PEOPLE AND LET THE COMMUNITY CONTINUE TO LEAD ITSELF!”

“…but that hasn’t worked. Won’t also reducing support staff and outsourcing to third parties with no accountability also hurt player perception?”

“REDUNDANCIES!!! WE GOTTA MAKE BUDGET ROOM TO HIRE THE THOUSANDS OF NEW STAFF WE NEED SOMEHOW!”

I get it, redundancies do happen and regional/company needs change. But still, screw you, Blizzard.

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Danny Smith

Another rip roaring day for modern Blizzard being modern Blizzard i see.