Activision’s CEO Bobby Kotick first earned the ire of PlayStation fans by suggesting Activision would stop supporting the PS3 unless Sony reduced the price. That prompted some amusing responses with Sony’s CEO Howard Stringer responding that Kotick was just being “noisy” and Bioware’s co-founder Greg Zeschuk then saying that he would be “silly” to stop supporting Sony.
Then in the wake of the news that Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 would have a higher than usual price at retail and that the PS3 does actually make Activision fairly handsome profits, he did nothing to endear himself to gamers in general when during Activision’s earnings conference call last week he said that he would raise the retail prices of games even further if he could.
Those particular comments were supposedly a joke and not to be taken seriously though at the very least they were ill-considered at a time when many gamers and consumers in general are finding themselves increasingly strapped for cash as the world’s economies struggle to recover from the global recession.
Kotick himself is clearly not feeling the pinch of the credit crunch in his wallet though. On his Forbes profile page his earnings for last year have been published. As you might expect for the CEO of a global company he is earning a salary most of us could only dream of, almost $900,000.
His salary is only a fraction of his total compensation package though. How small a fraction you ask? Less than one sixteenth. Making up the majority of his earnings were his $5m bonus, option awards of almost $6m and “non-equity incentive plan compensation” of $3m. All adding up to a grand total just shy of $15m. No wonder games appear so cheap to him.