Head of Xbox Phil Spencer has said that he will recognize Raven Software’s union after its acquisition of Activision Blizzard is complete.
As reported by Kotaku, Spencer made the statement during an internal company meeting earlier today. “We absolutely support employees’ right to organize and form unions,” Spencer said. “Once the deal closes, we would absolutely support [an] employees’ organization that’s in place.” He went on to mention the importance of employees’ rights to unionize. Spencer did not appear to mention Raven Software by name based on the quotes Kotaku obtained.
Earlier this week, a group of quality assurance employees at Raven Software voted to form the first union at a major game studio. Despite Activision’s repeated disdain for unionization, employees successfully passed a 19-3 vote to establish the Game Workers Alliance. Last month, the National Labor Relations Board ruled that employees could vote to establish a union despite Activision Blizzard initially refusing to recognize it. Raven Software is part of the Activision Blizzard family of companies.
The news is the latest high point in a tumultuous year for Activision Blizzard. The company has been rocked by allegations of harassment and gender discrimination from a variety of employees. In January, news broke that Microsoft planned to acquire Activision Blizzard for $68 billion, a purchase that’s being investigated by the Federal Trade Commission. The deal has not gone through yet, but based on Spencer’s statements at today’s internal meeting, it appears as though Microsoft expects it to be approved.