Shareholders at Call of Duty and Overwatch 2 publishes Activision Blizzard voted overwhelmingly Thursday to approve one Sales for $ 69 billion to technology giant Microsoft. The deal provides golden parachutes to top executives at Activision, including the challenged CEO Bobby Kotick. But despite gaming’s biggest acquisition ever moving a step closer to completion, the company’s weak stock price indicates that Wall Street investors still believe the deal may eventually collapse.
Back in January, Microsoft announced its plan to acquire Activision for $ 95 per share in a cash trade, double-digit premium on what the stock was then valued after months of disturbing reports and lawsuits all around that Call of Duty the manufacturer’s alleged history of sex discrimination and misconduct.
Despite the promised payday, Activision’s share fell the lowest point since the agreement was announced yesterday. Even with 98% shareholder support in today’s vote, the acquisition must still pass inspection by the Federal Trade Commission, which is currently headed by Biden-appointed Lina M. Khan, a public advocate for crack down on anti-competitive consolidation in the marketplace.
By approving the $ 69 billion deal, shareholders also said yes to potential millions in salaryouts for the company’s top management. As reported by AxiosKotick alone could look up to a $ 22 million bonus, not including his gains from the sale of personally owned shares, if a subcommittee of Activision’s board members decides he’s done enough to correct the sexist workplace culture he allegedly oversaw with for years.
Board members include Dawn Ostroff, chief content officer at Spotify who helped sign Joe Roganand Reveta Bowers, a longtime teacher at an elite private elementary school in Los Angeles, where Kotick sat on the board until 2020. Kotick is already one of the highest paid CEOs in America.
The agreement could also have other major consequences. Microsoft has said it will abide by existing agreements To keep Call of Duty multiplatformbut it’s unclear what that will mean along the way as the publisher’s huge library of fan favorites likes Diablo IV is used to help strengthen Game Pass. The Netflix-like subscription service has become a guiding star for the Xbox in recent years and has recently acquired upcoming blockbusters as Starfield are day-and-date draws for the service.
If the deal were to eventually be rejected by the FTC or otherwise collapse in some way, it would leave Activision in a difficult situation. Earlier in the week, it reported a weak sale of Call of Duty: Vanguard and recently delayed games like Diablo IV and Overwatch 2 still has no release dates. In the meantime QA Developers in the Raven Software Studio is currently set to vote to become the first union ever at a major publisher in the gaming industry.