Bobby Kotick has said he’s prepared to take minimum wage until the Activision Blizzard discrimination case is resolved and targets are met.
In a letter to all Blizzard employees, Bobby Kotick has stated he will take minimum wage until the company has achieved its targets when it comes to stamping out discrimination. Kotick is the CEO of Activision Blizzard who reportedly earned $155 million in 2020 in bonuses.
Blizzard is currently involved in numerous lawsuits since the accusations of sexual harassment in the workplace came to light. The company claimed as many as 40 employees at Blizzard has been disciplined as a result of one lawsuit and several more are still ongoing.
Bobby Kotick’s letter to staff
In his letter, Kotick wrote, “I have asked our Board of Directors to reduce my total compensation until the Board has determined that we have achieved the transformational gender-related goals and other commitments described above.”
“Specifically, I have asked the Board to reduce my pay to the lowest amount California law will allow for people earning a salary, which this year is $62,500. To be clear, this is a reduction in my overall compensation, not just my salary. I am asking not to receive any bonuses or be granted any equity during this time.”
Blizzard fostered “frat-boy culture”
Activision Blizzard has been accused of fostering a “pervasive frat-boy culture” with very few women reaching the top roles or earning less than their male colleagues. The lawsuit resulted in several senior members of Blizzard’s management team leaving the company, including Alex Afrasiabi who left in June 2020.
The company also agreed on an $18 million settlement to bring an end to another lawsuit which was also based on workplace discrimination and harassment. This particular case is what led to the company establishing its Five Commitments to tackle any further instances of harassment and discrimination.
Blizzard has also faced a backlash over changing its female character models. This was seen by some as a cynical attempt to appear progressive rather than fixing the problems engrained within the company’s culture.