Game developer and publisher EA has just announced that it is laying off almost 350 employees from its marketing, publishing and other teams. This is just another negative news in what has been a bad year for the gaming industry for the developers and employees. According to a report by Kotaku, the news website reported that it has acquired an email EA boss Andrew Wilson apparently announced that the goal behind this is to streamline the decision-making process in the marketing and publishing departments following a consolidation that began last year. It is also an effort to improve customer support, and change some of the company’s international strategies, and this move apparently includes the closing of Russia and Japan offices.
“We have a vision to be the World’s Greatest Games Company,” wrote Andrew Wilson on the email. “If we’re honest with ourselves, we’re not there right now. We have work to do with our games, our player relationships, and our business. Across the company, teams are already taking action to ensure we are creating higher-quality games and live services, reaching more platforms with our content and subscriptions, improving our Frostbite tools, focusing our network and cloud gaming priorities, and closing the gap between us and our player communities,” he added.
Following this EA replied back to Kotaku with the following statement.
Today we took some important steps as a company to address our challenges and prepare for the opportunities ahead. As we look across a changing world around us, it’s clear that we must change with it. We’re making deliberate moves to better deliver on our commitments, refine our organization and meet the needs of our players. As part of this, we have made changes to our marketing and publishing organization, our operations teams, and we are ramping down our current presence in Japan and Russia as we focus on different ways to serve our players in those markets. In addition to organizational changes, we are deeply focused on increasing quality in our games and services. Great games will continue to be at the core of everything we do, and we are thinking differently about how to amaze and inspire our players.
“This is a difficult day. The changes we’re making today will impact about 350 roles in our 9,000-person company. These are important but very hard decisions, and we do not take them lightly. We are friends and colleagues at EA, we appreciate and value everyone’s contributions, and we are doing everything we can to ensure we are looking after our people to help them through this period to find their next opportunity. This is our top priority.”
After this, a representative from the company confirmed that all the laid off employees will be given severance packages and said, “Yes, we are working with employees to try and find other roles inside the company,” the spokesperson said. “For those that are leaving the company, we will also be providing severance and other resources. I’m not able to provide the details on the severance, but we work hard to be as helpful as we possibly can.”
According to the report, a source in the company happened to mention that these layoffs had been expected for a while now and EA had put in place a hiring and travel freeze on marketing for several months. The people in the respective teams were expecting a reorganization for since last October. And EA is not the only gaming company to lay off people this year and it joins Activision Blizzard and ArenaNet who made similar decisions this year.