Activision Blizzard’s onboarding of woman director hindered by Microsoft acquisition, company says

The company failed to hire another female board member by the deadline.

Photo via Activision Blizzard / Mergr

When a company has six or more people on its board, it must have at least three women serving as one of the board directors, according to California state law. Activision Blizzard has more than six people serving on its board but still has not met the threshold for the law.

In an annual report released by the company, Activision Blizzard said it was required to hire another female board member by Dec. 31, 2021, but failed to do so.

“To meet this requirement and improve the diversity of our Board of Directors, the Company retained a search firm and began interviewing potential additional female directors in 2021,” the report reads. “However, since the Company’s current directors would cease to continue to serve on our Board of Directors upon consummation of our proposed transaction with Microsoft, we were unable to conclude the process in 2021.”

The company notes that it will continue its hiring efforts to bring on another female board director but seems to imply that hiring one is proving difficult since the position will be short-lived due to the Microsoft acquisition that’s predicted to close in mid-2023.

The difficulty could also come from reports of mistreatment of Activision Blizzard’s female employees, which came to light in mid-2021 and have kept the spotlight due to more allegations arising since then.

Activision currently has 10 members on its board and only two of them are women. The company has doubled the number of women in its game development leadership roles since 2016, according to the report. But as of Nov. 30, 2021, only approximately 24 percent of the global employee population at Activision Blizzard identifies as female or non-binary.

The company says it is committed to increasing the percentage of female and non-binary employees by 50 percent but failed to elaborate on how it plans to do so.