Activision Blizzard to halt all game sales in Russia
The US-based video game holding company Activision Blizzard has stepped in following fellow organizations and individuals in the gaming industry to stand against the Russian invasion of Ukraine by suspending the company’s games sales and in-game purchases in Russia.
In a letter via Eurogamer, the game company president Daniel Alegre announced the decision to suspend the company’s “new sales of and in Russia”.
However, the statement does not specify whether the decision is set to include sales of both digital and physical games. In addition, Alegre said the decision remains in effect “while this conflict continues”.
“Today, we are announcing that Activision Blizzard will be suspending new sales of and in our games in Russia while this conflict continues. We will continue to look at ways to support the Ukrainian people. I want to reassure you that the safety of our employees is our leadership team’s top priority,” Alegre’s statement reads.
“We are doing everything possible to assist employees, and their families, who are being directly affected by this tragedy. If you or a colleague needs support, please don’t hesitate to reach out to your manager or local HR leaders. I’d also like to remind you that our Employee Assistance Program is available to those who need emotional support during this difficult time.”
Suspending sales in Russia is not the only thing Activision Blizzard decided to do. Prior to the announcement, the company has raised over $300,000 in providing immediate support to Ukraine and in the upcoming week, Alegre revealed that the company will host additional charities.
“I also want to take a moment to recognize the incredible work of our teams to support the Ukrainian people. The company is matching employee donations 2:1 to organizations providing immediate relief in the region. Together we have raised over $300,000 in this effort. Next week we plan to add additional charities to choose from for consideration and also will raise the company matching limit from $1,000 to $10,000,” Alegre added.
Activision Blizzard is one of the video game organizations standing against Russia. Previously, Microsoft has suspended all new sales of Microsoft products and services in Russia and Belarus. The computer software giant’s decision also includes Xbox games and Windows associated products.
Microsoft president Brad Smith in a blog reaffirmed the company’s commitment is the safety of its employees in Ukraine.
“As a company, we are committed to the safety of our employees in Ukraine and we are in constant contact with them to offer support in many forms, including those who have needed to flee for their lives or safety,” Smith added.
“Like so many others, we stand with Ukraine in calling for the restoration of peace, respect for Ukraine’s sovereignty and the protection of its people.”
Alongside Activision Blizzard and Microsoft are the prominent industry names from Epic Games stopping the company’s commerce, EA Games decided to remove Russian teams from the professional gaming competitions (FIFA and NHL) and set to take a similar “cut off” sales movement as well as CD Projekt Red.