Five days after the Wall Street Journal revealed that Bobby Kotick reportedly threatened to murder an assistant, the journal now reports that Activision’s CEO informed top executives he’d consider quitting the firm if he couldn’t “quickly” alter the company’s culture of wrongdoing.
Since last week, when a report claimed that Kotick knew about sexual misconduct in Activision Blizzard since 2018, Kotick’s part in the Activision Blizzard sexual misconduct issue has been under scrutiny. In 2006, Kotick allegedly threatened to have his assistant assassinated, and he also allegedly interfered to prevent an employee from being dismissed for sexual misbehavior, according to the report.
According to sources, Kotick met with top personnel from both Activision and Blizzard last week, and it was at the meeting with Blizzard on Friday that Kotick suggested he’d consider quitting, though those words leave a lot of space for interpretation.
In a November 16 video message shared with employees, Kotick said “we are moving forward with a new zero-tolerance policy for inappropriate behavior — and zero means zero. Any reprehensible conduct is simply unacceptable.” There’s considerably less wiggle room in those words.
Last week, it was reported that Kotick and other Activision executives conducted many meetings to reassure employees that the company was dedicated to a healthy environment. According to sources, at one online discussion, Activision executives informed Kotick that some employees would stay dissatisfied until he departed.
Employees at Activision Blizzard have demanded Kotick’s removal, staging a walkout and gathering signatures on a petition that “asks that Bobby Kotick remove himself as CEO of Activision Blizzard and that shareholders be allowed to select the new CEO without the input of Bobby, who we are aware owns a substantial portion of the voting rights of the shareholders,” according to the petition.
The company’s board of directors has yet to examine Kotick, according to sources, however, they are reportedly considering forming a “workplace quality committee.”