Microsoft reorgs Xbox leadership following Activision acquisition

Microsoft is shaking up the structure and leadership of its Xbox gaming and marketing divisions shortly after its record-breaking $68.7 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard. Matt Booty was promoted to president of game content and studios, which will oversee ZeniMax and Bethesda. Likewise, Sarah Bond will now serve as president of Xbox.  Her responsibilities will include overseeing Xbox’s platform and hardware strategy. Finally, Chris Capossela, chief marketing officer, has stepped down after 32 years at Microsoft.

Xbox’s leadership changes are designed to streamline Xbox’s org chart and support better collaboration across its recent acquisitions. Its acquisitions will have varying levels of integration. According to the Verge, ZeniMax will continue to operate somewhat independently under Jamie Leder, president and CEO.

Of course, Microsoft now has the challenge of integrating Activision Blizzard into its Microsoft gaming division. Dave McCarthy, chief operations officer of Microsoft Gaming, will oversee the transition on the operations side. The company did not announce a replacement for Bobby Kotick, current CEO of Activision Blizzard. Kotick set to step down at the end of the year.

Bond will steer the future of Xbox’s hardware and software platforms. Additionally, Bond will be one of six women in leadership roles reporting directly to Phil Spencer according to a new org chart. 


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Xbox's new org chart following its Activision Blizzard acquisitionXbox's new org chart following its Activision Blizzard acquisition

“To manage the platform of today, and build the platform of tomorrow, we are bringing together the teams that will make this possible,” said Spencer. “Sarah Bond will lead this team as President of Xbox — bringing together Devices, Player & Creator Experiences, Platform Engineering, Strategy, Business Planning, Data & Analytics and Business Development.”

On the marketing side, Takeshi Numoto will take over as chief marketing officer from Capossela. “Takeshi has been at the heart of our Cloud transformation,” said Satya Nadella, Microsoft CEO, in an internal memo to employees. “I’m thrilled for him to step into the CMO role for Microsoft and drive our vision forward.”

Nadella also announced Yusuf Mehdi’s promotion to executive VP, consumer chief marketing officer. Mehdi will concentrate on end user experiences including continuing his work on driving AI-powered services from Microsoft. This aligns with Microsoft’s overall strategy of integrating AI into more of its products, including Windows, Office and Bing.

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