Activision Blizzard recently published Form 10-K, which was submitted to the Securities and Exchanges Commission (SEC), and makes mention of the recent layoffs last month. Form 10-K, for those of you not up on your governmental forms and bureaucratic ABCs, is an annual report submitted to the SEC of the U.S. government that gives a summary (with the term used lightly as the document is over 300 pages long) of a company’s financial performance of a fiscal year. The report published by Activision Blizzard on February 28 covers the fiscal year of 2018, ending December 31. While the layoffs took place shortly after the new year, it would seem the company’s restructuring plan, and the consequences, were included in the report, which you can read in full here.
The layoffs were mentioned fairly early in the report on page 13 of 306. “We may not realize the expected financial and operational benefits of our recently announced restructuring plan, and its implementation may negatively impact our business.” The report claims that the restructuring of the company (aka getting rid of 8% of staff, roughly 800 people) stemmed from a need to “remove unnecessary levels of complexity and duplication from certain parts of our business.” The main purpose of the Form 10-K is for a company to cover their bases financially, making sure they are compliant will all applicable laws and regulations for a publicly traded company, as well as any and all unintended consequences of decisions made.
With this in mind, it’s important to point out that the report also claims that the company is unsure if the layoffs they have made will be enough. “Further, there can be no assurance that our business will be more efficient or effective than prior to implementation of the plan, or that additional restructuring plans will not be required or implemented in the future.” While this may not be anything to worry about yet, it does leave Activision Blizzard open to call for another round of layoffs should they feel that it would lead to a more “efficient or effective” business.