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"Call of Duty Warzone." Image via Activision.

"Call of Duty" giant Activision Blizzard has said it will give stockholders an extra week to continue voting on 2020 c-suite payouts that include $155 million for CEO Bobby Kotick.

Why it matters: The shareholder approval vote is non-binding, so Activision Blizzard’s board can do whatever it wants, but a "no" vote would still pressure the company to change things in the future.

Driving the news: The vote was originally scheduled to be completed at Activision Blizzard’s annual meeting on Monday, alongside a vote on the company’s board.

  • But Activision announced late on Monday that voting on the compensation issue would be open through June 21, based on "requests from shareholders for additional time."
  • The other votes were completed on Monday, successfully.

Between the lines: For the past two weeks, Activision Blizzard has been in a war of statements with investor groups who have urged shareholders to vote “no” on Kotick’s and others’ pay.

  • The argument against isn’t just that the payments are too high, but that some adjustments in Kotick’s income announced earlier this spring don’t go far enough.
  • Activision had pushed back, issuing two notices to shareholders, including one last Friday, to refute the investor groups.
  • In an example of how this has been going, investor group CtW accurately knocked the company for failing to achieve even 70% approval of its annual pay proposals five times since 2014 — while Activision accurately countered by saying it got 92% and 82% in two of the past three years.

By the numbers: Kotick's $155 million in cash and stock for 2020 would make him the second-highest CEO of an S&P 500 company, according to the Wall Street Journal.

  • He made $30 million in 2019, but a 90-day streak in Activision Blizzard’s stock price in 2020 triggered the much larger windfall.
  • It also triggered investor criticism, which led to Activision Blizzard announcing a 50% pay cut in Kotick’s base salary this year, down to $875,000. A contract extension lowered his potential bonuses in 2022.
  • Under that investor pressure, Kotick also agreed to receive an early stock reward for 2021 with a maximum value of $32 million, down from the originally planned $54 million.

What they're saying: Activision Blizzard justified the highly unusual one-week vote delay by saying that "allowing additional time for shareholders to meaningfully participate in the vote better represents their interests."

  • Michael Varner, of CtW, one of the groups urging a "no" vote, told Axios that Monday's delay was a "desperate attempt to avoid losing."
  • He and Activision both noted that 86% of the shareholders have already voted.

What's next: Results of the extended vote are likely to be revealed on June 21.

Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - Sports

In photos: Tokyo Olympics day 6 highlights

An underwater view of swimmers including Team USA's Caeleb Dressel (R) in the final of the Olympic Tokyo Games men's 100m freestyle on July 29. Photo: François-Xavier Marit/AFP via Getty Images

There's been plenty of Olympics drama on day six of the Tokyo Games Thursday — notably China's women's swimming team beating the U.S. and Australia in the record-setting 4x200-meter freestyle relay.

The big picture: Katie Ledecky helped the U.S. win silver, which also beat the previous world record smashed by China's team. Team USA grabbed two more swimming gold medals, when Caeleb Dressel won the men's 100m freestyle and Bobby Finke triumphed in the first men's Olympic 800m freestyle.

Updated 2 hours ago - Sports

Olympics dashboard

Team USA's Simone Biles during the women's team final on day four of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games at Ariake Gymnastics Centre on Tuesday in Japan. Photo: Fred Lee/Getty Images

🤸🏾‍♀️: Simone Biles reacts to "love and support" after withdrawing from all-around gymnastics and team finals, citing her mental health

🏊‍♂️: Caeleb Dressel wins gold in men's 100m freestyle —Bobby Finke wins gold in first men's Olympic 800m freestyle

📷: In photos: Tokyo Olympics day 6 highlights

🗓: The Olympic events to watch today

🎾: "This one sucks more than the others," Naomi Osaka says on upset loss

🏃‍: Female Olympians push back against double standard in uniforms

Go deeper: Full Axios coverage - Medal tracker

Updated 4 hours ago - Sports

China wins Olympic gold in women's 4x200m freestyle relay, sets world record

Junxuan Yang, Muhan Tang, Yufei Zhang and Bingjie Li of Team China react after winning the gold medal in the women's 4 x 200m freestyle relay final. Photo: Al Bello/Getty Images

China grabbed Olympic gold in the women's 4x200m freestyle relay, in a surprise record win in Tokyo Thursday.

The big picture: Katie Ledecky made up time as Team USA's final swimmer to help the U.S. take silver. Australia, which was the heavy favorite, won the bronze. All three teams finished ahead of the previous world record pace.