Activision Blizzard Paying $35 Million To SEC To Settle Disclosure Controls And Whistleblower Complaint
The fine is for “failing to maintain disclosure controls” and “violating whistleblower protection rule”.
Activision Blizzard is having to dole out a bit of cash for some of the issues surrounding its treatment of employees. The U.S. Securities Exchange Commission issued a press release today stating that the company will pay a $35 million fine “to settle charges that it failed to maintain disclosure controls and procedures to ensure the company could assess whether its disclosures pertaining to its workforce were adequate.” The fine went to cover charges of violating an SEC whistleblower protection rule.
According to the press release, these charges pertain to actions between 2018 and 2021. During this time, the company “lacked controls and procedures” between the different sections of the company to “collect and analyze employee complaints of workplace misconduct”. This resulted in the company not having a good understanding of the issues within their company – particularly regarding how many complaints had been put forth. This lack of shared information left them without the ability to suss out larger problems and disclose them.
Beyond that, the company is also having to pay for trying to stop former employees from communicating with the SEC regarding potential violations. According to the statement, it’s “not only bad corporate governance, it is illegal”.
The official findings are that ABK violated Exchange Act Rules 13a-15(a) and 21F-17(a). The company didn’t admit or deny the charges, but did agree to a cease-and-desist order and paying the $35 million fine – something that could be seen as a general admission of guilt.
Note: Activision Blizzard is still under investigation by the state of California for serious harassment charges. CEO Bobby Kotick is alleged to have known about such actions within his company – and performed some himself – and shielded the perpetrators from consequences.
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About the Author
QuintLyn is a long-time lover of all things video game related will happily talk about them to anyone that will listen. She began writing about games for various hobby sites a little over ten years ago and has taken on various roles in the games community.
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