Shareholder Calls On Fellow Investors To Vote Against The Activision Blizzard Merger With Microsoft

SOC Investment Group recently called on other shareholders in Activision Blizzard to vote against the upcoming merger of the company with Microsoft. SOC Investment Group has been described as a “substantial shareholder” in Activision Blizzard. The news comes from an open letter published ahead of a critical meeting about the matter which is currently scheduled for April 28, 2022.

The open letter published by SOC Investment Group highlights how the deal fails to properly value Activision Blizzard and its future profitability in addition to the “incompotent handling” of the ongoing “sexual harrassment crisis” on the part of its board of directors.

“This transaction fails to properly value Activision Blizzard and its future earnings potential in significant part because it ignores the role that the sexual harassment crisis and the Activision Blizzard board’s incompetent handling of it has played in delaying product releases and depressing the share price,” the statement remarks. This goes on to describe how SOC Investment Group has been “skeptical that any transaction with Microsoft or a similar acquirer would be viable given the shift in the climate of antitrust enforcement as well as evident sources of potential harms to competition stemming from the merger.”

SOC Investment Group condemns the board of directors at Activision Blizzard in no subtle terms. “In overseeing the merger negotiations, the Activision Blizzard board went above and beyond in its fecklessness. The board approved the Microsoft merger proposal without taking such standard steps as forming a special committee of independent directors to vet the proposal or having the independent directors meet without management present to approve the merger.”

The shareholder urges fellow investors to vote out the board members for their “negligent handling of the sexual harassment crisis” and an “abnormal concentration of leadership roles” for board members who are “overtenured.” SOC Investment Group also points to a “general lack of independence including a board member who was a former company executive with personal connections to Chief Executive Officer Bobby Kotick who has been under intense scrutiny for perpetuating a ‘frat house’ work culture.”

SOC Investment Group has previously managed to convince other shareholders in Activision Blizzard including Future Super, NEI Investments, and Verve Super to demand sweeping changes concerning oversight policies for the board of directors. The organization also successfully pushed Activision Blizzard to cut the pay of Chief Executive Officer Bobby Kotick.

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