Amazon has decided to lay off more than 100 employees in its gaming division. The company says these changes should help it achieve its long-term goal of becoming one of the world’s leading game publishers.
On April 4, Amazon Games VP Christoph Hartmann announced layoffs in a memo to staff on April 4. The job cuts will affect over 100 people across Prime Gaming and Game Growth divisions, as well as the company’s San Diego studio. Some employees will be reassigned to other projects.
Hartmann noted that people whose roles will be eliminated will be offered severance pay, health insurance benefits, and paid time to conduct their job search.
“It is my firm belief that we have a unique opportunity to become one of the leading publishers of high-quality gaming content that delights players for years — whether that’s creating our own games internally, publishing titles from talented developers like Bandai Namco and Crystal Dynamics, providing entertaining shows on Crown Channel, or offering great content via Prime Gaming,” the memo, published in full by CNBC, reads. “Delivering the best content for players is at the center of what we do, and today’s changes are aimed at focusing our teams toward that commitment.”
According to Hartmann, Amazon will continue to invest in in-house game development and other growth areas:
- Irvine, California-based team will continue to grow and work on the company’s MMORPG New World;
- Amazon will expand the size of its studio in Montreal so that it can start full production of its unannounced game;
- The company will expand its third-party publishing efforts such as its recent agreement with NCSoft to distribute Throne and Liberty.
At the end of March, Amazon CEO Andy Jassy announced job cuts that would affect 9,000 people across AWS, PXT, and advertising divisions, as well as Twitch. This is on top of the previous round of layoffs that resulted in the elimination of 18,000 positions.
In January, John Smedley, one of the creators of EverQuest, stepped down as the head of Amazon Game Studios after leading it for six years.