Microsoft’s Booty to lead Blizzard as Bobby Kotick leaves Activision cover image

Microsoft’s Booty to lead Blizzard as Bobby Kotick leaves Activision

Bobby Kotick is out Matt Booty now leads Blizzard. Kotick departs at the end of the month after 32 years with Activision.

Activision-Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick announced his departure from the company today in a memo. Set to leave on Dec. 29, new A-B owner Microsoft isn't wasting any time setting things in motion. While its been known since the finalization of the merger that Bobby Kotick would be leaving Activision, he says in the memo who the top brass at Blizzard will call boss.

Booty is now in charge. The Microsoft Game Content and Studios President Matt Booty, that is. The news comes from a full internal memo from Phil Spencer as reported by The Verge.

"Thomas Tippl (Vice Chairman, Activision Blizzard), Rob Kostich (President, Activision Publishing), Mike Ybarra (President, Blizzard Entertainment) and Tjodolf Sommestad (President, King) will report to Matt Booty," Kotick says in the memo. "The leadership teams for Activision Publishing, Blizzard and King remains in place, with no changes to the structure of how the studios and business units run."

Bobby Kotick gone from Activision

The rule of Bobby Kotick over Activision and its subsidiaries is a sordid tale of ups, downs, and public disgrace. The company soared to the highest of highs under his tenure thanks to the Call of Duty and World of Warcraft franchises. However, underneath lay numerous alleged allegations of ignoring worker abuses and dueling with a burgeoning A-B unionization effort.

Kotick announced back in January that he would stay on as Activision CEO during the Microsoft transition. However, that timeline continued to be stretched further down the road as the merger was challenged in court over and again. However, the time has come and as of Dec. 29 the heads of Blizzard will report directly to Microsoft.

"I cannot adequately express the pride I have in the people who continue to contribute to our success and all those who have helped throughout my 32 years leading this company," says Kotick about leaving Activision.

Meanwhile, Spencer attempts to assuage fears of tumultuous times ahead at Blizzard, saying "For most of you, your day-to-day work will remain the same—it’s still business as usual in bringing more groundbreaking experiences to more players around the world."

What's next for the company? We won't know until 2024.

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