Electronic Arts lays off 350 staff

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Electronic Arts has announced that it is laying off 350 of its roughly 9,000 staff, in order to “Refine our organization”.

In a public statement, EA CEO Andrew Wilson said: “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.”

Wilson continued: “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.”

Wilson did not offer specific reasons for the lay-offs, but they continue a recent trend among the biggest games publishers: EA’s great rival Activision Blizzard recently laid off 775 employees, and in February 2019, EA laid off 50 employees at its Firemonkeys developer in Australia, after shutting down developer Visceral Games in late 2017.

Last month, EA posted worse than expected financial results for the third quarter of the 2018 financial and in a statement, Wilson said: “Q3 was a difficult quarter for Electronic Arts and we did not perform to our expectations. We are now applying the strengths of our company to sharpen our execution and focus on delivering great new games and long-term live services for our players.”

However, he did talk up the prospects for the fourth quarter, saying: “We’re very excited about Apex Legends, the upcoming launch of Anthem, and a deep line-up of new experiences that we’ll bring to our global communities next fiscal year.” Both those games – despite disappointment with Anthem among critics – have performed well in financial terms.

As more details emerge of the impact of EA’s lay-offs, we’ll bring them to you. In the meantime, more EA-related news can be found on the company’s website.

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Steve Boxer
Steve Boxer has been writing about videogames since the early 1990s. His first console was an Atari VCS, and he misspent most of his youth in the 1980s in the arcades. As well as for Green Man Gaming, he can be found writing for The Guardian, Empire, TechRadar and Pocket-Lint. He’s currently having trouble deciding whether his favourite console is his Xbox One X or his Switch, and plays a wide range of games, but especially RPGs (he loves a good JRPG) action-adventure titles, shooters of all descriptions and driving games. Follow him here.