The United States is investigating a meeting between Activision Blizzard’s CEO Bobby Kotick and Barry Diller’s son-in-law

Investigators have begun investigating a meeting between the CEO of Activision Blizzard and the stepson of a billionaire, a few days before the man, his father and another wealthy partner made millions on shares when the company was bought out of Microsoft for $ 68.7 billion.

The U.S. Department of Justice is investigating whether Activision CEO Bobby Kotick and Alexander von Furstenberg violated insider trading laws when they met for breakfast in January ahead of Furstenberg’s decision to buy shares in the company with his father, IAC chairman Barry Diller, and other media . mogul David Geffen, the Wall Street Journal reported.

The three men bought shares for $ 40 each on January 14, days before Microsoft bought Activision Blizzard for $ 95 per share – giving the three men $ 59 million in profits.

Diller denied the allegations, telling WSJ that he and his staff knew nothing about the upcoming deal with Microsoft.

“We had no knowledge of that transaction, and it contradicts gullibility to think that if we did, we would have moved on,” Diller said.

“It’s just as unlikely to think that Mr Kotick, a sophisticated professional, in a social breakfast with Mr von Furstenberg and his wife would have told them about the pending transaction.”

Federal investigators investigate a meeting Activision’s CEO Bobby Kotick (pictured) had with Alexander von Furstenberg days before Furstenberg decided to buy shares

von Furstenberg (left) bought the shares along with his father, IAC chairman Barry Diller (right) and media mogul David Geffen for $ 40 a share.  share on January 14th

von Furstenberg (left) bought the shares along with his father, IAC chairman Barry Diller (right) and media mogul David Geffen for $ 40 a share. share on January 14th

Geffen (above), Furstenberg and Diller earned $ 59 million after Microsoft acquired Blizzard Activision days later for $ 68.7 billion

Geffen (above), Furstenberg and Diller earned $ 59 million after Microsoft acquired Blizzard Activision days later for $ 68.7 billion

Diller has sat on the board of Coca-Cola with Kotick, whom he described as a ‘friend for a long time.’

Diller already has a net worth of $ 4.5 billion, while Geffen is worth about $ 10.3 billion and von Furstenburg is worth about $ 10.1 million.

A spokesman for Activision said Kotick simply enjoyed a social brunch with his friends the day he met with Furstenberg.

“Of course, he did not share any information with them about a possible transaction with Microsoft,” the spokesman said in a statement.

Furstenberg and Geffen did not immediately respond to a request for comment from DailyMail.com.

The three men are also under investigation for alleged insider trading by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

The SEC is also conducting a separate investigation into Kotick and other Activision heads about how they handled allegations of misconduct in the workplace that plagued the company during its final year before being acquired by Microsoft.

Diller (pictured) has sat on the board of Coca-Cola with Activision CEO Bobby Kotick, whom he described as a 'friend for a long time'.  He denies that he had inside knowledge of Microsoft's impediment to the acquisition of Activision Blizzard when he made his purchase

Diller (pictured) has sat on the board of Coca-Cola with Activision CEO Bobby Kotick, whom he described as a ‘friend for a long time’. He denies that he had inside knowledge of Microsoft’s impediment to the acquisition of Activision Blizzard when he made his purchase

In September, the Federal Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) launched an investigation into the company, and two months later, Kotick, accused of having handled the harassment complaints, had signaled that he would consider resigning if he failed to rectify the situation quickly. up on the corporate culture.

He has led the company for more than three decades.

The video game giant announced earlier this year that it had fired 37 employees and disciplined more than 40 others since July 2021, as it deals with allegations of sexual harassment and other misconduct.

Last July, the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing sued the Fortune 500 company over what it called a ‘frat boy’ culture.

The agency says women make up only 20 percent of the workforce and receive less money, fewer promotions, are fired more often and suffer from ‘constant sexual harassment’.

“Male employees proudly come to work, play video games for long periods during work, while delegating their responsibilities to female employees, engaging in teasing about their sexual encounters, talking openly about female bodies and joking about rape,” the lawsuit states. .

The suit names Blizzard President J. Allen Brack, who stepped down in August, and longtime World of Warcraft developer Alex Afrasiabi, who quietly left the company last year.

The video game giant has been under the SEC's eye for almost a year after bomb reports of the company's toxic workplace environment with hundreds of allegations of harassment and discrimination

The video game giant has been under the SEC’s eye for almost a year after bomb reports of the company’s toxic workplace environment with hundreds of allegations of harassment and discrimination

It claims that Afrasiabi had a so-called ‘Cosby Suite’ in a hotel during corporate events.

‘During a corporate event (an annual convention called Blizz Con [sic]) Afrasiabi would hit on female employees and tell him [sic] he wanted to marry them, tried to kiss them and put his arms around them, ‘reads the complaint.

‘This was clear to other male employees, including supervisors, who had to intervene and pull him out of female employees. Afrasiabi was so known for engaging in harassment of women that his suite was nicknamed ” Crosby Suite ” [sic] after the alleged rapist Bill Crosby [sic]. ‘

Activision Blizzard had agreed to pay $ 18 million to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to decide on a sexual harassment investigation.

Over the past year, the company has received about 700 reports of employees’ concerns about sexual assault or harassment or other misconduct, in some cases separate reports of the same incident, the WSJ reported.

Nearly 20 percent of Activision Blizzard’s 9,500 employees have signed a petition calling for Kotick to resign.

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