Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick sent an open letter to all of his company’s employees on Thursday morning and told them he will be taking a salary of just $62,500, the minimum allowed payment for an exempt salaried employee in California.
For the record, this is obviously not the federal minimum wage. In California, $62,500 is the minimum salary an employee can earn without being paid overtime when working more than 40 hours per week.
According to Kotick, that will be a “reduction in overall compensation” and no bonuses or equity will be granted until the company has achieved “transformational gender-related goals.”
In the letter, first reported by Video Games Chronicle, Activision Blizzard’s CEO says:
“I truly wish not a single employee had had an experience at work that resulted in hurt, humiliation, or worse – and to those who were affected, I sincerely apologize,” Kotick writes. “You have my commitment that we will do everything possible to honor our values and create the workplace every member of this team deserves.”
To reach a “transformational gender-related” environment at the embattled company, Kotick lays out five goals in his letter to employees.
- We are launching a new zero-tolerance harassment policy company-wide.
- We will increase the percentage of women and non-binary people in our workforce by 50% and will invest $250 million to accelerate opportunities for diverse talent.
- Based on feedback from employees, we are waiving the required arbitration of sexual harassment and discrimination claims.
- We will continue to increase visibility on pay equity.
- We will provide regular progress updates.
Kotick further admits that the company completely failed to put “guardrails” in place to ensure that employees would feel comfortable with reporting their concerns.
Activision Blizzard is currently facing serious charges from the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing. Charges include violations of the state’s civil rights and equal pay laws.