Activision CEO Is Paid Way Too Much, Says Investment Group
Many video game developers and publishers have seen criticisms rise against them in greater numbers the past few years, but one of the top targets of these criticisms has been Activision. With Blizzard under their possession, Activision is one of the biggest video game companies in the world. However, the company’s growth has not stopped them from making controversial choices, such as laying off over 800 employees last year, despite record profits and Activision CEO Bobby Kotick being declared one of the most overpaid CEOs in the country. Now, investors are being asked to vote against the terms for Kotick’s 2020 bonus.
Investment group CtW, which has a significant investment interest in Activision, recently released a letter filed with the Securities Exchange Commission directed at Activision investors. The letter urges investors to vote against a proposal that will be held to a vote during an investors’ call on June 11th this week. Included in this proposal is an incentive package for Kotick, which CtW claims to be excessive. They defend this position by referencing Activision’s mass layoffs and the drastic pay gap between Kotick and Activison’s average employees. As the letter states:
It is of special concern in this case because Activision Blizzard employees face job insecurity following layoffs of 800 employees in 2019, and typically earn less than 1/3 of 1% of the CEO’s earnings, with some employees, such as Junior Developers, making less than $40,000 a year while living in high-cost areas such as southern California.”
The letter also points out that Kotick has received more than $20 million in stock and options for the past four years in a row, mentioning that equities such as these have “consistently been larger” than the total pay of CEOs of companies at a similar level. The letter does acknowledge that Kotick’s incentives require a certain level of performance in regards to profit growth, but that the sheer excess of the rewards are what would be objectionable in this case.
Despite the letter’s arguments, Activision has defended this incentive package and their other decisions in a statement to GameSpot, attributing the substantial bonus to the company’s increasing value under Kotick’s 20-year watch. Still, investors might benefit in weighing the merits of this bonus before the investors call, and whether or not it is justified. Some might say that CtW is using this letter as a Call of Duty to investors.
Do you guys disapprove of Activision CEO Bobby Kotick’s excessive bonus as well? Let us know in the comments below! Be sure to stay tuned for the latest Activision news, such as recently leaked gameplay for Call of Duty 2020, here on Don’t Feed the Gamers! Follow us on Twitter to see our updates the minute they go live!
Cory Lara1570 Posts
A royally radical and totally tubular 90s kid, Cory has a passion for all things nerdy, particularly gaming and nostalgia. While an accountant by day, he strives to be as creative and humorous as possible in his free time, be it here writing on Don't Feed the Gamers, or making dumb satirical posts on his Twitter, Youtube, Facebook and Instagram accounts.