The SOC is a group of investors who are trying to pressure Activision Blizzard into selling or spinning off the company’s gaming division. The PS4 and Xbox One have been dominating sales for years, but the stock price has not changed with their success.
The “blizzard activision” is a concern for the “SOC Investment Group Calls for Bobby Kotick & Board Members to Resign”. The investment group has called for Activision Blizzard’s CEO and board members to resign.
The Strategic Organizing Center (SOC) Investment Group has sent a letter to the Board of Directors demanding the resignation of three members of the board: CEO Bobby Kotick, Chairman of the Board Brian Kelly, and Lead Independent Director Robert Morgado, following a scathing report by the Wall Street Journal that laid all of Activision Blizzard’s problems squarely at the feet of CEO Bobby Kotick. The Board of Directors, for their part, has backed the CEO and indicated ongoing faith in his leadership.
Bobby Kotick is the subject of a Wall Street Journal report. Employees’ Reaction to Kotick The CEO has the support of the board of directors.
While numerous media sites have referred to this as “a group of shareholders representing 4.8 million shares,” it is crucial to note that this is coming from a professional organization that has previously criticized Activision Blizzard and CEO Bobby Kotick. Although they claim to represent $4.8 million in Activision Blizzard stock, they only account for about 0.61 percent of all Activision Blizzard shares, giving them very little direct voting power – most recently failing to persuade shareholders to reject Kotick’s voluntary 50% pay cut, though it could be argued that the pressure led to the CEO promising to reduce his compensation to the California state minimum of $62,50.
SOC Investment Group is a private equity firm based in New York
According to new reporting, CEO Bobby Kotick was aware of numerous incidents of sexual harassment, sexual assault, and gender discrimination at Activision Blizzard, but failed to either ensure that the executives and managers responsible were fired, or to recognize and address the systemic nature of the company’s hostile workplace culture, in contrast to previous company statements. Furthermore, despite many government probes, settlements, and senior management exits that have harmed the company’s public image and stock price, the board has remained almost completely mute.
As a result, we demand that Mr. Kotick resign as CEO of the firm, and that the board of directors accept responsibility for allowing a “frat boy” working culture to grow, as defined by the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing. We encourage Chairman Brian Kelly and Lead Independent Director Robert J. Morgado to announce their retirement no later than December 31, 2021, in order to guarantee that the board has leadership capable of spearheading this initiative. The board should immediately begin looking for more competent replacements.
We encourage the board to immediately commit to the following in addition to firing Mr. Kotick and replacing Messrs. Kelly and Morgado:
• Hire an independent corporate governance expert with a track record of rooting out sexist and discriminatory workplace practices to conduct a review of past board practices, structure, and composition to determine how and why the board failed to address the company’s “frat boy” culture before the public announcement of the California lawsuit. Include the disclosed voluntary decrease in overall CEO salary in his employment contract for at least five years if the Board does not remove CEO Robert Kotick, and auto-renew it if the specified workplace objectives are not fulfilled. Also, determine if any other executives will take similar cuts or whether the firm will forego awarding incentives this year.
The SOC, formerly known as the CtW Investment Group, is a union pension fund advisory body that has regularly campaigned against Activision, as well as other companies such as Electronic Arts, McDonalds, DoorDash, General Electric, and others, during the previous two years. It is essentially a professional lobbying firm.
Additional Concerns from Playstation
Playstation CEO Jim Ryan similarly blasted Activision Blizzard’s poor reaction in an email to staff, saying that he and his leadership were “disappointed and frankly astonished” to learn that Activision “had not done enough to confront a deep-seated culture of discrimination and harassment.” Given Playstation’s tight links to Activision and Blizzard Entertainment in particular, which promote games like Call of Duty and the Diablo series, this might put more pressure on the firm and its CEO, who has been with the company for a long time.
Bloomberg’s Jim Ryan
“We immediately reached out to Activision after the publication of the story to express our profound concern and inquire about their plans to address the charges stated in the article,” he said. “We don’t feel their responses adequately address the problem,” said the group.