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More layoffs hit EA

More layoffs hit EA

April 25, 2013 | By Kris Ligman

April 25, 2013 | By Kris Ligman
More: Console/PC, Production, Business/Marketing

EA posted on its news blog The Beat today that it is undergoing a new wave of layoffs.

With the announcement still fresh and rumors abounding about the scale of the layoffs, it is unknown at this time how many of EA's over 9000 employees will be affected -- but it's enough for EA to address the cuts publicly.

Gamasutra previously reported that EA laid off a significant amount of workers just earlier this month.

The statement from EA, dubbed an "Organizational Update," reads as follows:

In recent weeks, EA has aligned all elements of its organizational structure behind priorities in new technologies and mobile. This has led to some difficult decisions to reduce the workforce in some locations. We are extremely grateful for the contributions made by each of our employees - those that are leaving EA will be missed by their colleagues and friends.

These are hard but essential changes as we focus on delivering great games and showing players around the world why to spend their time with us.

We're following up with EA to get a clearer picture of what's happening at the company. If you have any information that can fill in the gaps, please get in touch with us at news at gamasutra dot com. All confidentiality will be honored.

UPDATE: A reliable source familiar with the situation at EA cast doubt on reports that 10 percent of the workforce has been laid off. We still don't have a clear picture of the extent of the layoffs, and don't expect to until possibly EA's earnings call early next month.

The source also said key titles that were being handled by EA Partners -- a publishing branch that handles externally-developed games -- are still on track, namely Insomniac Games' upcoming Fuse and the major title coming from Respawn Entertainment. Mobile-focused Chillingo is also continuing to work with independent developers to publish new titles. The EA Partners publishing label is rumored to have been discontinued.

The same source claimed that reports of 2,000 layoffs at EA are widely overstated.

UPDATE (4/26/2013): TechCrunch has shared an internal EA memo from executive chairman Larry Probst concerning the layoffs:

As we begin the new fiscal year, I want to provide you with a brief update on some important changes to our organization. As Executive Chairman, my focus is to ensure EA is delivering high quality games and services to our consumers, while helping the executive team develop a FY14 operating plan that drives growth, rationalizes headcount and controls costs.

In recent weeks, the executive team has been tasked with evaluating every area of our business to establish a clear set of priorities, and a more efficient organizational structure. This process has led to some difficult decisions about the number of people and locations needed to achieve our goals.

The workforce reductions which we communicated in the last two weeks represent the majority of our planned personnel actions. We are extremely grateful for the contributions made by each of these individuals - they will be missed by their colleagues and friends at EA.

We are also taking action to streamline our organization, including changes in two key areas:

Core marketing functions have been consolidated under our COO, Peter Moore. The combined group will bring together our Label marketing teams, Global Acquisition Marketing and Marketing Analytics into one multi-talented team under Todd Sitrin's leadership. The development and marketing teams will continue to work as cohesive units, driving clear and consistent messaging and consumer engagement for each of our franchises.

Origin will move into Frank Gibeau's Labels organization. Andrew Wilson will take on the leadership of Origin, working with CJ Prober and the team to create more value and an enhanced entertainment experience for our consumers.

Change is sometimes difficult, but essential. The adjustments we are making will put us in the best position to build great games and services, deliver them more efficiently to consumers, and demonstrate to players around the world why they should spend their time with us.

EA is a great company, with talented and hard-working teams, a strong portfolio of products and an extremely bright future.

Thank you all for your dedication and commitment to our long term success!

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