As reported by sites such as Kotaku, Activision Blizzard employees were warned ahead of time that layoffs were coming their way. On Tuesday, the company stayed true to its word by cutting 8 percent of non-development staff across Activision Publishing, Blizzard Entertainment, and King. In total, that comes out to about 800 out of 9,600 employees.
The stated purpose of the restructuring effort is to redirect resources from non-development positions to its game creation teams. However, the layoffs have already led to the closure of King’s Seattle studio (formerly Z2Live), removing 78 jobs in total. The studio was acquired by King in 2015 for $45 million and made games such as Battle Nations for both mobile devices and PC. In January, Bungie announced that it was splitting from Activision Blizzard after the parent company expressed that sales of the latest Destiny 2 DLC expansion was "disappointing" despite its profitability.
This all comes as the company reported making a record $2.38 billion in revenue in 2018. But Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick explained on an earnings call that the high revenue did not represent the company’s “full potential.”
Although he did not elaborate what the company’s full potential looks like, Wall Street originally estimated that the company would bring in close to $3 billion. Therefore, Activision Blizzard is looking for ways to increase its revenues by about 20 percent in 2019, according to the company’s quarterly earnings report.