Activision Blizzard agrees to pay $35 million to settle labor claims

Activision Blizzard agrees to pay $35 million to settle labor claims

Activision Blizzard agrees to pay $35 million to settle labor claims

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Activision Blizzard has agreed to pay $35 million (nearly Rs 290 crore) to settle allegations over the video game maker’s handling of workplace complaints and breaches of whistleblower protection rules , US financial regulators announced on Friday.


The Securities and Exchange Commission said the company was aware that employee retention issues were “a particularly significant risk in its business” but that it did not have adequate measures in place to handle complaints of corporate misconduct. work between 2018 and 2021.

The company, which makes the popular Call of Duty game, also required employees between 2016 and 2021 to tell the company if the SEC contacted them for information — a violation of whistleblower protection rules, the agency said in a statement.

“Activision Blizzard did not have the necessary controls in place to collect and investigate employee complaints about workplace misconduct, which left it without a way to determine whether there were larger issues that needed to be addressed. disclosed to investors,” said Jason Burt, who heads the SEC’s office in Denver. said in a statement.

Representatives for the Santa Monica, Calif.-based video game development and publishing company said in a statement that they were “pleased to have resolved this matter out of court” and that they had ” improved” their workplace relationships and contract language.

Microsoft, which makes Xbox, had made a $69 billion (almost Rs. 5,66,500 crore) bid to acquire Activision Blizzard, but the Federal Trade Commission asked a judge in December to block the deal. EU authorities are also reviewing the deal. The FTC, which enforces antitrust law, argued that the deal would give Microsoft’s Xbox exclusive access to Activision games, leaving Nintendo consoles and Sony’s PlayStation out in the cold.

FTC administrative law judge Michael Chappell will rule on the deal after hearings scheduled for August 2023.

© Thomson Reuters 2023

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