Activision Blizzard, the massive video game company behind well-known IPs such as Call of Duty, Warcraft, and Overwatch, has announced plans to part ways with the company’s current Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Spencer Neumann. First reported by CNBC, the company informed Neumann yesterday, December 31, of their plans, and have placed Neumann on a paid leave of absence.
Concerning Neumann’s planned departure, Activision Blizzard’s intent to terminate his employment was detailed in a United States Securities and Exchange Commision filing made by the company. Though no official reason was given as to why the company plans to part ways with Neumann, according to the filing, it is “for cause unrelated to the company’s financial reporting or disclosure controls and procedures.”
Neumann’s leave of absence will serve “as an opportunity to demonstrate why cause does not exist to terminate his employment or why termination of his employment is not otherwise justified.” While Neumann is on his leave, the company’s former CFO and current Chief Corporate Officer Denis Durkin will serve as interim CFO until a final decision is made. If the company goes through with the termination of Neumann, Durkin will officially become the company’s new CFO.
Prior to joining Activision Blizzard in 2017, Neumann worked for Disney as the CFO of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts. Neumann served less than two full years at Activision Blizzard, and a source close to the situation states that his planned termination is due to the fact that Neumann seems to have been poached from Activision Blizzard by the video streaming giant Netflix. According to the source, Neumann is expected to become Netflix’s new CFO in “early 2019,” so an announcement from the video streaming company could be coming in the near future. However, Activision Blizzard has yet to make any official comments or announcements concerning these reports.