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Dangen chief Judd steps down following harassment, mismanagement allegations

Dangen chief Judd steps down following harassment, mismanagement allegations

December 12, 2019 | By Chris Kerr

Ben Judd has stepped down as the CEO of Japan-based indie publisher Dangen Entertainment after being accused of sexual harassment, predatory behavior, and corporate mismanagement. 

In a statement posted on the company website, Judd admitted some of his past actions have caused "a great deal of pain," although he didn’t address any of the accusations specifically

He explained he’ll be stepping away from Dangen and the Bitsummit independent gaming show for the foreseeable future to focus on "fixing some of the issues that have come to light."

"Over the past few days, it's become clear that I personally caused an ex-partner a great deal of pain from my actions while we were together six years ago," he wrote. "Many things I didn't recognize about power dynamics I now see for the harm they can and did cause; for that and my related reckless and inappropriate behavior I am truly sorry.

"In order to take responsibility and give myself time and space to work on this, I will be stepping away from Dangen and Bitsummit and taking leave from my other industry endeavors."

Dangen, which claims it still has enough evident to support its original rebuttal of the mismanagement claims leveled against it, said it would be supporting Judd’s exit from the company to protect its current employees and clients.

As such, the Iconoclasts and Momodara publisher will be transferring ownership to Dan Stern, who will also serve as interim CEO while the search for a long-term replacement takes place. 

Company co-founder Nayan Ramachandran will also be stepping away as a full-time employee after an anonymous client suggested he was personally responsible for mishandling an account. He will, however, continue to be involved with the company on a freelance basis.

"Dangen stands by our mission to promote and support indies in Japan and all over the world. We have always had our developers' best interests at heart. And while mistakes have been made, we have always acted in good faith to resolve them fairly," commented the team.

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