Blizzard will be reducing its global workforce by 600 people. About 540 (90%) of them will come from departments not related to game development. Blizzard makes note that the World of Warcraft
development team will not be impacted by these layoffs.
Mike Morhaime, CEO and cofounder of Blizzard, has the following to say:
Constant evaluation of teams and processes is necessary for the long-term health of any business. Over the last several years, we've grown our organization tremendously and made large investments in our infrastructure in order to better serve our global community. However, as Blizzard and the industry have evolved we've also had to make some difficult decisions in order to address the changing needs of our company.
Knowing that, it still does not make letting go of some of our team members any easier. We're grateful to have had the opportunity to work with the people impacted by today's announcement, we're proud of the contributions they made here at Blizzard, and we wish them well as they move forward.
It's certainly bad news for those impacted, and we here at WoW Insider hope that everyone is able to land on their feet.
According to the press release, current publishing schedules for their various games will not be affected.
Update 1:00 p.m. EST:
Another statement from Mike Morhaime, after the break.