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Activision Blizzard Faces SEC Probe

  • Activision Blizzard is facing a probe from the Securities and Exchange Commission over investor communications around sex harassment claims.
  • It is also negotiating a settlement with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
Activision/Design: Alex Brooks

Activision Blizzard’s sexual harassment and toxic workplace issues are receiving federal attention: The company is being investigated by the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The SEC has subpoenaed the company and several top executives, including CEO Bobby Kotick, seeking minutes from board meetings, personnel files, and separation agreements, according to the Wall Street Journal.

The agency has also asked for communications between Kotick and other senior executives regarding sexual harassment and discrimination complaints. It is seeking to determine if investors should have been contacted earlier about certain complaints.

The $57 billion market cap company is now facing legal action from at least three government agencies.

  • The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has been investigating gender-based harassment claims at the company since at least May 2020.
  • The company is discussing a settlement with the EEOC that would likely cost it millions of dollars.
  • In July, the California Department of Fair Housing and Employment filed a lawsuit alleging that women at the company were paid less than men for similar work. 

The legal action coincides with a 26% drop in Activision Blizzard’s stock price from mid-June to market close on Tuesday, despite a second quarter that saw company revenues rise 18.8% to $2.3 billion.