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Microsoft confirms layoffs after evaluating "business priorities"

"Like all companies, we evaluate our business priorities on a regular basis, and make structural adjustments accordingly."

Chris Kerr, News Editor

October 18, 2022

2 Min Read
An image of a Microsoft Store

Microsoft has confirmed it has made layoffs to meet changing business priorities. 

Speaking to Game Developer, a company spokesperson said that some employees will be laid off, but neglected to confirm precisely how many staff will be affected.

"Like all companies, we evaluate our business priorities on a regular basis, and make structural adjustments accordingly," said the company. "We will continue to invest in our business and hire in key growth areas in the year ahead."

Some outlets including Business Insider are reporting that Microsoft has laid off around 1,000 workers, including some members of its Xbox and Edge teams.

Axios, meanwhile, noted that the cuts have been made across a variety of levels around the world, and were made in response to an uncertain economic climate.

They also arrive as Microsoft attempts to seal its massive $68.7 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard.

The Xbox maker is pushing to have the deal approved in key regions around the world, and while some regulators -- including those in Brazil and Saudi Arabia -- have already given the move the go-ahead, others remain more skeptical about the potential impact the purchase could have on rivals and the wider game industry.

For instance, UK competition regulator the CMA has sanctioned an in-depth investigation into the Activision Blizzard purchase over concerns it might "harm" rivals and grant Microsoft an "unparalleled advantage" in certain markets such as game streaming.

Microsoft, however, continues to reiterate its stance that the deal will benefit both consumers and developers. 

"This deal will benefit gamers, developers, and the industry as we seek to bring more games to more people. We’re committed to answering the CMA's questions and ultimately believe a thorough review will help the deal close with broad confidence," said a Microsoft spokesperson, speaking to Game Developer about those concerns. "We’re still on track for it to close in fiscal year 2023 as initially anticipated."

About the Author(s)

Chris Kerr

News Editor, GameDeveloper.com

Game Developer news editor Chris Kerr is an award-winning journalist and reporter with over a decade of experience in the game industry. His byline has appeared in notable print and digital publications including Edge, Stuff, Wireframe, International Business Times, and PocketGamer.biz. Throughout his career, Chris has covered major industry events including GDC, PAX Australia, Gamescom, Paris Games Week, and Develop Brighton. He has featured on the judging panel at The Develop Star Awards on multiple occasions and appeared on BBC Radio 5 Live to discuss breaking news.

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