Activision Blizzard is seeing a growing number of employees leaving the company recently, with the many claiming that diminished morale is pushing talented individuals to new opportunities. Among the key figures that have left Blizzard in recent months is Kim Phan, who served as Global Director of Esports for Blizzard, but there are reportedly more prominent figures that have either left or who are planning to leave the company soon.
Rumblings of low morale apparently surfaced after Overwatch League Commissioner Nate Nanzar left Blizzard to pursue an opportunity with Epic Games. According to a source speaking to Dexerto, the approach of Activision Blizzard esports CEO Pete Vlastelica, who left Fox Sports to take on this role at the company. This source suggests that the leadership team doesn’t understand esports and how best to handle the Overwatch and Call of Duty leagues.
For any who have been following Activision Blizzard’s esports scene it is no secret that things are not going as planned. Just a few months ago, Activision Blizzard laid off a large number of employees, many of them from within the esports wings. It was an odd shift for the company too, as these layoffs followed the announcement that Activision Blizzard had set new records for revenue in a fiscal year. Now, employees are taking their own leave rather than watch management struggle or potentially suffer a similar fate somewhere down the road.
Whether or not these high profile departures will lead to any change within Activision Blizzard’s esports division is yet to be determined but fans are taking notice. Nanzar leaving was a big deal for the company and Phan following not far behind only further suggests employees are not happy. Esports has grown to become a massive business and Activision Blizzard is at the forefront of that with Overwatch and Call of Duty, but if the folks who are supposed to be guiding things towards growth are instead pursuing opportunities elsewhere, and with competitors like Epic Games, then it may be time to re-evaluate.