Tuesday, June 6, 2023
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Microsoft Laying Off 10K Individuals ‘Hurts’

Phil Spencer speaks in front of an Xbox logo.

Photograph: Patrick T. Fallon (Getty Photographs)

Just a few hours in the past, Xbox CEO Phil Spencer despatched out a company-wide e mail to all full-time workers beneath Microsoft’s gaming divisions. A duplicate of the e-mail was shared with Kotaku by a present Xbox worker, we’ve confirmed its authenticity, and the complete textual content has been transcribed under:

This has been a tough week throughout Microsoft, and right here, inside our groups. Now that most of the 1:1 and staff conversations have occurred, I wish to take a second to reiterate the message that you simply heard out of your leaders.

This can be a difficult second in our enterprise, and this week’s actions had been painful selections. The Gaming Management Group needed to make selections that we felt set us up for the long-term success of our merchandise and enterprise, however the person outcomes of these selections are actual. I do know that hurts. Thanks for supporting our colleagues as they course of these modifications.

Over the approaching weeks we may have many alternatives to attach and reply your questions, together with the Month-to-month Gaming Replace subsequent week for groups who attend that assembly, and I’m in shut contact with groups at ZeniMax to offer help. The GLT and I are dedicated to being as clear as we will. Transferring ahead with ambiguity is difficult, however I’m assured that collectively, we are going to get by way of this tough second in time.

Xbox has a protracted historical past of success because of the work you do in service of gamers, creators, and one another. Your work is so deeply appreciated and valued in these occasions of change and is integral to our enterprise momentum. I’m assured in our future and proud to be a part of this staff, but additionally acutely aware that this can be a difficult time and I wish to thanks for the whole lot you do right here.


On January 18, Microsoft laid off 10,000 workers throughout the corporate. These layoffs included gaming studios equivalent to 343 Industries, The Coalition, ZeniMax Media, and Bethesda Sport Studios. Xbox has struggled to launch first-party titles final yr, and is beneath large stress to ship flashy blockbuster titles equivalent to Starfield. Among the individuals who have misplaced their jobs embody senior expertise, and occurred a yr after the writer scourged up the pocket change to buy Activision Blizzard for $70 billion. Kotaku has reached out to Microsoft for a press release, however didn’t obtain a response by the point of publication.

“This appears like one thing you ship out on obligation,” wrote a present worker at Xbox over textual content messages to Kotaku. “I significantly doubt any of these month-to-month gaming updates or different conferences are going to do something to make anybody really feel higher.”

The tech employees’ union CODE-CWA put out a press release on January 19, stating that their representatives have been involved with Microsoft. The corporate “acknowledges its obligation to cut price over any proposed layoffs of CWA members at ZeniMax.” The ZeniMax union intends to barter on “alternate options to layoffs.”



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